Gail Damerow Discusses Poultry Predator Prevention


What are factors of entry and the way are they eradicated?

“Home windows and air flow openings are prime factors of entry. They simply might be secured with 1⁄2-inch {hardware} fabric to maintain out predators. The coop flooring is one other frequent level of entry. A stable flooring is a greater deterrent than a mud flooring. If the coop is constructed straight on soil, diggers might be deterred by lining the underside with {hardware} fabric and securely attaching it to the coop partitions throughout.

“Some intelligent predators, akin to raccoons and bears, achieve entry by opening a window or a door. As a deterrent on our farm, all our coop home windows and doorways, in addition to gates, are secured with double-action latches. To open a double-action latch requires two completely different motions, akin to lifting and pulling. An instance is a slide bolt latch.”

What about issues like flashing lights or faux owls?

“A few of these issues work to a sure diploma. Flashing LED lights have labored on our farm, however it’s important to know what sort of predator you’re coping with to accurately place the lights. You even have to ensure the lights hold working, as some want a periodic battery change. Others are photo voltaic and must get sufficient daylight to maintain working

“One other factor we’ve got on our farm is safety lights on all evening. Massive cats, like bobcats and cougars, particularly don’t prefer to prowl the place lights are on,” says Ms. Damerow.

“We additionally use wind catchers that flutter in a breeze to discourage flying predators. The issue with them is that they break unfastened and blow away in actually windy climate, in order that they require fixed alternative.

“Faux owls, scarecrows, and the like work solely so long as they’re a novelty. Most predators are sensible sufficient to quickly ignore one thing that by no means strikes. So, until these issues are moved round, and sometimes altered in look, they gained’t work for lengthy,” she cautions.

How about noise makers?

Issues that make noise, akin to motion-sensitive sirens or a radio left on all evening, can work. Sadly, in addition they disturb the chickens’ sleep, and possibly that of close by neighbors.

What about trapping?

“Trapping is a horrible thought for a lot of causes. For starters, it is probably not authorized, relying on the placement, kind of entice, and sort of predator you might be coping with. Killing a predator doesn’t clear up the issue. Earlier than lengthy one other predator will take over the territory. Relocating a predator additionally doesn’t clear up the issue. As a rule,  the predator will return to its residence territory. And even when it doesn’t, one other predator will quickly take its place.

“Once we people select to restrict poultry to swimsuit our personal functions, we take upon ourselves the accountability for protecting them secure. I’m a agency believer that any predator assault just isn’t the fault of the predator. It’s the fault of the poultry keeper. And I discovered that from private expertise.”


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