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Predator Control

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Which Predator Control Is Best For Your Coop?

Below are a few of the most common methods for predator control. Included are the "pros and cons" of using each method. There are no "perfect solutions" for your coop, without testing several  methods to see which works best for your coop.
Predator proofing your coop against animals is as individual as each chicken coop is different.. Some animal proofing works for some chicken owners, but it may not work for you. In MOST cases you may have to try several of these methods and or a combination of methods to see what is best for your coop to prevent predators.
In MOST cases building the BEST and STRONGEST coop and predator proofing your coop BEFORE you get started is the best way to have chickens in the morning.


"Solar Night Lights" that blink to scare predators. There are several popular brands and they do WORK.
Pros: These lights do work in scaring predators. They keep away most all of them. Bobcats, Racoons, Foxes, Owls, Coyotes and other
Cons: With NO predators in your area to consume fast breeding pesky RATS.(or domestic or feral cats) You will have to deal with these varmits, rats and cats do kill and eat young to medium sized chickens and LOT of them. They will may decide to even live in your coop area (rats or cats)  any left over feed at night will attract rats, and the smell of young chicken will attract cats. These pests breed frequently, may carry diseases, and will stay in your coop to feed thier young.  Rats chew through wire and wood. One of the worst pests that will cost you money and time.(and kill your chickens) Plus as a side note: more rats equal more SNAKES!  Note: "night light" protectors DO NOT protect against rats, domestic house cats or feral (wild cats)
Solution:  To kill rats, keep barn cats outside near your coop area if wire is strong enough to protect poultry. Or, use "Rat Terrier dogs" out near coop or run at night for rat control.If not possible to use dogs or barn cats, you can very carefully use rat traps or poisons (not near pets or children) to control the rat/cat population.



"Kids And Dogs"
Can and will injure or kill your chickens. Unless you TRAIN your dog and raise it as a puppy with your chickens, it will harm your flock. Be sure to watch small children near chickens. MANY injuries or deaths of chickens can be from kids and dogs! Most of the time they just want to "play" but a dead chicken is what results most of the time.



"Scarecrow" and other named motion sensored water activated "scare" for predators. When the predator comes near your protected area, the motion sensors will spray a quick blast of water. The sudden noise and water is enough to scare most predators away. Yes it DOES work too. But predators come in all shapes and sizes. Think of the water you will be spraying at night. Do you live in a drought or low water area? This this might not be best solution for you.
PROS: It works by scaring some predators (not all) away.
CONS: The predator comes close to your coop area. It may learn a different path to avoid being sprayed and can enter your coop or run again.



The WORST Predator To Your Chickens Is BACTERIA!



Traps: You will need to bait and stake out traps in the areas that predators are getting into your coop. These traps are great for "catch and release" or you can destroy the pesky predator that has been killing your chickens. Traps come in many shapes and sizes. You will have some work ahead of you if you choose this solution. Does not always work effectively.
PROS: Many traps gives you the choice to free the predator and let it live, take it to another location and "release"
CONS: Can be heavy to carry and time consuming to bait and check traps, may take a while to work and catch your varmit.



Rat Terrier Dogs catch AND KILL rats and snakes! & keep away other pests They are a chicken owners best protection against pests."Ratties" are marvelous at catching lots of animals that can be pests. I personally put our two terriers in the coop run area at night AFTER the chickens are put in the coop. They can repel or kill MANY native common rats, bobcats, feral cats, and snakes that live in your area at night to feed on left over chicken feed or live chickens. Snakes, rats and feral cats will want to live or breed near your coop. My dogs "Butch" and "Spike" can't WAIT to be put in the chicken run at night. Killing rats, (cats and snakes) its what they are bred to do, IMPORTANT! unless you raise Rat Terriers (or any dog) around chickens, they will kill your poultry too.
PROS: They KILL rats and snakes plus keep away bobcats and feral cats. Period!
CONS: I can't think of any!


Fake Barn Owls. (or other scary birds) A stationary owl-like predator control will help with SOME predators. May be motion sensored to use eyes and "hoot" owl sounds. May even "flap" wings too You will need to attach it to your fence area near the coop area.
PROS: This unit is lightweight usually and comes in several colors and styles, not too expensive and may work on SOME animals
CONS: May not be weatherproof for very long. May not be good for all predators. Is not strong to withstand lots of heat or high winds.


Rat Bait: "Just One Bite" rat bait REALLY WORKS. Make sure to put this bait in areas that your pets and kids cannot get into. Use a sandwich container put bait in, place lid on top and duct tape or seal well. Cut a hole the size of quarter in both ends. Place around your coop area or IN the coop area near chicken food. Make SURE its sealed.
PROS: Really works. Is effective in controlling the rat population
CONS: Is real poison and should be handled carefully. If containers not used the pets and children may be harmed (or your chickens) This product is not weatherproof for very long. But it KILLS rats.