Winter Predators

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by NataleeKW, Nov 12, 2017 at 7:29 AM.

  1. NataleeKW

    NataleeKW Well-Known Member

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    Columbia City, IN
    I have lost a duck and a chicken in the last week. The duck in the middle of the night. I relocated them to the goat pen and put them in the barn at night. The chicken was attacked by the neighbors dog and didn't survive and now I'm a little gun shy about letting them free range. Can they be cooped all the time for the winter?
     
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  2. Alder

    Alder Well-Known Member

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    I keep mine penned and cooped forever. Free range usually means a free lunch for somebody.
     
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  3. aart

    aart HOW do they DO that?

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    Location:
    Southwest Michigan
    Same here...large coop and run 24/7/365.
     
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  4. mzgarden

    mzgarden Well-Known Member

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    zone 5
    Ours ranged for years and then boom, got picked of. Made a big day time run on the side of the barn where there's grass, trees, a couple downed logs and stuff for them to peck, eat, bugs and shade. Added a couple run unders, cut a chicken sized hole in the barn. They are locked up at night in a barn stall and then free to go in and out of the pen/barn all day. No more chickens lost.
     
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  5. hiddensprings

    hiddensprings Well-Known Member

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    Minnesota
    While I love to free range chickens, mine are kept in a coop at night and during the day in a totally enclosed pen. We have eagles, hawks, all kinds of canines (dogs, coyotes, wolves, etc) cats (domestic and wild) and bears. When I decided to get chickens, hubby built the coop and pen like Ft Knox. Still I see the occasional Eagle sitting on the top of the pen area trying to figure out if he can get one.
     
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  6. stockdogcompany

    stockdogcompany Well-Known Member

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    Jan 24, 2015
    Location:
    IN
    Electronet perimeter fence can give your birds outside access without the concern of larger earthbound predators(dogs, coyotes, etc) attacking your stock if properly constructed and energized. I prefer not to use poultry net, as the close spacing to the ground means more fence to plant and ground contact. I use 10/48/6 for a variety of animals including poultry that is large enough to not slip through it.

    https://www.premier1supplies.com/c/fencing/electric-netting/

    If aerial predators are also a problem during daylight hours, aviary netting over the top can work. https://www.strombergschickens.com/category/poultry-netting
     
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  7. dyrne

    dyrne Well-Known Member

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    Feb 22, 2015
    I keep them in a run fall/winter. We have many more problems with predators this time of year. Hawks, because the leaves are off the trees and not as much cover, coyotes and fox because they need more food with the cold I assume but for whatever reason they start coming into the pasture and even onto the porch at night when it starts to cool down. I always put them up in the evening though regardless of the time of year otherwise there is zero chance they'd last.

    My dogs are awesome but dont help when they are free ranging since the roosters will lead the hens all over creation. I usually have no idea where they are during the day. yeah I'd say coop or maybe a small run during the day.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017 at 12:00 PM
  8. LittleFarmrJohn

    LittleFarmrJohn Well-Known Member

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    I have a small coop (converted playschool house) inside a 10x10 fully enclosed chainlink kennel. And I still lost 3 of my girls to two different raccoons this year. (Wire wasn't tight enough and they have great dexterity). I'll let my girls out when I get home from work and on the weekend to free range but if I'm not home or it's dark they're locked up tight