New Hens and Coons

flowerbug

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Well I am sad to say that I have gone from 24 hens to 18. It's all my own doing, I forgot to lock them up a few times and coons got to them.
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sorry you have lost some of your flock, i have no experience with chicken raising but tons of experience with raccoons. the only thing that works reliably is a good strong fence. they're clever enough to figure things out if they want in and you give them a way.

we've never been able to trap them to get rid of them for good, they'll keep reproducing to fill in any gaps if your habitat will support them. they'll actually increase reproduction if you do trap them.

we don't grow crops (sweet corn seems to be their main target) that attract them any longer and we don't use fish based fertilizers so they do not disturb any of the garden plants. here or there they may dig in the mulch for grubs or worms but otherwise they leave everything alone. they used to disturb the green house onion starts when we planted them outside the fenced gardens, but now that we put them inside the fence they've not disturbed them at all - i'm not sure if it is because of the fence or that the greenhouse changed their fertilizer. there's not much in there otherwise that they go after (perhaps some of the strawberries, but i don't ever see signs of them).

with all the rocks we have around here they do provide a useful service, they go around and find the hornet and wasp nests and eat them.

what i don't like about them is that they often raid birds nests (i wish they'd pick on the grackles, but the grackles put their nests up pretty high now).
 

Ridgerunner

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An egg eater is one that purposely opens an egg to eat it. Most chickens will eat an opened egg, that's good nutrition. But the problem comes when one purposely opens and egg. There are all kinds of ways people give to solve that problem but I only trust two. One is to eat the one that is doing it. The other is to build rollaway nests so the chicken cannot get to the egg to eat it. The other ways might possibly work. These two will work.

Knowing Monte he's already killed a few raccoon, probably with collateral damage. Nothing delicate or indirect about that boy. In my opinion killing the ones that are hunting your property is a good thing, they are not going to go extinct because a few die. But as mentioned, that is only a temporary solution. More are being born, weaned, and set out to find hunting grounds all the time. Your best long-term defense is barriers. Since you say you didn't lock them up, those are probably in place.

Good to hear from you again.
 

Rhodie Ranch

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My chicks started eating eggs....I blew some out and filled them with hot sauce. They ate them...didn't even faze them...Then they stopped eating them. Dunno why...
 

flowerbug

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hot pepper doesn't work for deer either, if they're hungry enough, i mixed a bunch with urine and soaked cedar trees with that mixture and the deer came back that night and continued feeding like it wasn't even there. perhaps they liked it as a vinagrette...
 

dewdropsinwv

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Well when I started getting more eggs, I put up a covering over the next boxes. It seems to have worked. I havent gotten any more eggs with holes pecked in them. I got my first dozen eggs yesterday. It took 3 days, but I finally got it. LOL All the pullets laying the eggs are ISA'S my buff orps havent started laying yet that I can have seen.
 
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