Chicken coop, night raid..!!! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 05-20-2005, 01:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We woke up yesterday morning to fing that a raccoon had gotten into the coop and killed all of our chicks and rooster!!! The two muscovy ducks made it, but some of her eggs are missing.. We fixed what we thought the problem might be and this morning the ducks are doing well.

Does anyone know if there is a way we can keep them coons away without killing them?? Is there some kind of animal we can get that will keep them off???

We spent the whole evening last night, tossing ideas around....
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#2 of 15 Old 05-20-2005, 02:42 PM
 
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Sorry you were raided. How did they get in? You really have to secure it so they can't, and they can even lift some latches. Some dogs are really great about guarding the coop, but they need to be outside. Sorry I don't have any better ideas.
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#3 of 15 Old 05-20-2005, 02:47 PM
 
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So sorry about your chickies. your post caught my eye because I know I would be devastated if something got my girls. I don't really have an answer because I'm a new chicken owner but I got a lot of help from www.backyard chickens.com. The people there know a lot about chickens and you might find tips for racoon proofing.
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#4 of 15 Old 05-20-2005, 02:57 PM
 
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Are you sure it was racoons? The reason I ask is because skunks, weasils, roving dogs, bear ect can do in fowl.

One needs a very tight coop as that really the only way I know how to keep our birds safe. Weasils can get in the small little cracks, racoons are very handy with their front feet.

Dogs are good protection, but if its a racoon they can kill dogs by drowning them. We use dogs for protection during the day from other dogs, hawks and whatever.

Sorry to hear of your loss
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#5 of 15 Old 05-20-2005, 03:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the help!!
I went on backyardchicken and we proofed the coop, more than it actually was. I'm pretty sure it was a coon since it only ripped off the heads, didn't even eat the chicks!

We do have a dog, and leave her outside at night, but she's a golden retreiver, and I really can't see her fighting off coons!! But worth the try!!

The best we can do now is wait and see!!
DH is talking about catching the coon, so we will see.
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#6 of 15 Old 05-20-2005, 10:38 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by momto l&a
Dogs are good protection, but if its a racoon they can kill dogs by drowning them.

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#7 of 15 Old 05-21-2005, 01:18 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brisen
I think she meant the ducks can be drowned....
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#8 of 15 Old 05-21-2005, 08:53 PM
 
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No, racoons can and will drown dogs. Of course if you dont have a large body of water nearby then no worry.

If the heads are off makes me think is was a weasil because they normally just suck the blood and leave meat.
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#9 of 15 Old 05-21-2005, 11:17 PM
 
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No real advice, other than what has already been offered, just wanted to say I'm sorry this happened to you. We lost some of our first chickens to an owl - a hard lesson.

Take care...
Wendy
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#10 of 15 Old 05-22-2005, 10:01 AM
 
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Wow! I had no idea that a racoon could drown a dog. How do they do it?

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#11 of 15 Old 05-22-2005, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think that our dog will be ok.. The closest body of water is the ocean, which she doesn't go to on her own. We thought about the weasel or pine martin too, since the opening the animal got in is pretty small. So far no harm to the ducks. We are going to wait an other week, and then get some more chickens... We can only do our best... Fighting against nature and all!!
Dh got a live trap wich we will set up, this way we can catch and see what it is... I will keep you guys posted on what happens next!!
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#12 of 15 Old 05-25-2005, 02:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So we still haven't caught the animal (we haven't really tried yet). But everyone seems to agree that it was a weasle. Now here are my questions.
How big of an oppening can a weasle get into???
Can they climb up on the coop and get in through my ventilation oppenings??
We are kind of becoming obsessed with all this, we just want to make sure that if we get more chickens, they don't have the same faith!!
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#13 of 15 Old 05-25-2005, 03:25 PM
 
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So sorry that you had a raider - that must have been so upsetting.

I think that the pp's are right - it does sound like a weasel attack. Unfortunately they can squeeze through pretty small openings - how big are the vents on the house? Would it be at all possible to cover the vents with a fine metal screening?

I'm just going on what a gf in the UK had to do - she lost almost all of her ducklings 2 years ago
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#14 of 15 Old 06-20-2005, 01:50 AM
 
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I'm not too sure how small weasels are but we have ferrets and the skinny ones can slide under the cracks in the door. They're in the same family as weasels (mustelid?). Weasels are definitely smaller than ferrets so I imagine they can get into almost anything. You would probably be best off using some kind of screen material like what goes on windows. I don't think any kind of chicken wire would work.

Oh, and that' pretty disgusting about how they just suck the blood and leave the meat. I had no idea they did that. Yuck.

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#15 of 15 Old 06-20-2005, 05:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We got some new chickens last week, and fixed up the coop. So far no signs of any intruders.... Our ducklings should be hatching soon, so hopefully all goes well!! I check the coop everyday now to make sure that nothing tried to get in overnight. We will see!!
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