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The 3 Amigos

09 Jul

Looks like we had a (strong) visitor last night..not that my half-ass staple job was going to keep anything out but I was waiting for the weekend to fix it all up since it was getting dark when I originally did the work and was rushing to get done.

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SO, last night @ 2am I hear some urgent chirping..so I went out to poke around with Jango on leash ( so he cannot run away if it is a bear) and I see 3 critters scoot away from the coop..took a peak inside the mini-coop and the chicks were still there. So I set off after the critters..around 30 ft from the coop I see some black and white tails going up a tree..a mother and 2 juvenile raccoons..must have been the same ones who got Ma..I harrassed them for an hour or so..then went off to bed.

Well, when I checked this morning we still had chicks..minus 1 (blackbeard)..I had not counted the chicks and I know nothing was into the coop after I saw the raccoons but they had claimed a chick via the coop weakpoint..and nearby in the daylight I found the pelvis and spine..they had cleaned blackbeard to the bone.

..and then there were 3:
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Now that we have a problem I went out and bought a live raccoon trap and set it up in the mini-coop..awaiting another visitor.

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It is simple but seems effective..but raccoons are known to be wily so I will see it if works. I also moved the chicks back into the main coop and everybody seems to be getting along fine and now the chicks follow behind the main flock when out foraging..one mostly happy family.

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Hopefully more to come when I actually catch the raccoons..or the raccoons clean me out and force me to stop posting about chickens!

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8 Comments

Posted by on July 9, 2012 in Construction

 

8 responses to “The 3 Amigos

  1. kymber

    July 9, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    egb – ah buddy – don’t hate me for what i have to say. if you have already seen that it is a momma and 2 babies – then re-inforce the chicken coop and make it raccoon-proof. we had only one prob with raccoons and it was because of our laziness in leaving our garbage in a tin can on the porch – it didn’t matter. it made for easy pickings so of course, the raccoons came for it. once we started putting the garbage in the tin can IN the basement – the raccoons went away.

    if you trap one of those raccoon babies – the mother will go nuts trying to rescue it. if you trap the mother, the babies could potentially die. raccoons exist for a reason whether we understand the reason or not. i think your coop is easy pickings and i think that’s why the momma is bringing her babies there – she is looking for food as all mothers do.

    please, re-inforce your coop properly and make sure to leave no garbage around the house or yard. the momma will then be forced to actually go and hunt for food. when, by our own human laziness we make it easy for animals to come and get our easy pickings – it’s not their fault – they need to eat too.

    i’m calling you to line buddy. do not set that trap out. i trust that you understand what i am saying. if you trap a baby – the mother will go crazy. and if you trap the mother, the babies could die. and you are responsible for leaving easy pickings. just saying, buddy. just saying.

    your friend,
    kymber

     
    • eagergridlessbeaver

      July 9, 2012 at 9:50 pm

      Hey, no problem kymber! I we put posts up not because we are experts but that we welcome feedback. Hard to explain all aspects as that takes copious typing on this phone but the actual coop where all the fowl are is triple reinforced (it was a draft post as of now) with an initial flimsy line to just keep the chickens in during the day, followed by a 2ft dug in fine mesh metal (not the cheap stuff in the pic) gated 10×8 thick gauge metal fence (is it gauge or gage?). The coop itself has a metal covered coop entrance and there is a high hook on the brooder entrance…and also thanks to my occasionally meager building skills the door is a tiiight fit with an inside raised barrier to keep in the woodchips the coop which also serves to prevent and animal from pushing in. I agree with you on your points too, we captured so many porcqupines and released them 10 km away in the woods and we have never had a return visitor ( we put some paint on their backs to identify the ones that might need to be moved further if they returned).

      The other part if this is that I don’t know what will happen if this one ventures onto someone esles yard in the vicinity..might be worse than my livetrap if the beavers in the area have anything to say about it. I gave them a good hour long harmless harrasing in the hopes that ma raccoon would think twice about coming back..but today on the road nearby I did see a runover young raccoon.

       
      • eagergridlessbeaver

        July 9, 2012 at 10:03 pm

        ..and yes we need to be here to put security on. Hehe..we are in serious discussions about reducing the flock to 3-4 and keeping them penned in the small area instead of the free-roaming..I am sure they have enjoyed their mostly free life but the extra work, worry and time are to not really worth the extra 3-5 eggs we get a day…not to mention that without Ma to sit on the eggs Red the rooster has become obsolete..or slow roasted chicken fajitas. :P

         
      • eagergridlessbeaver

        July 9, 2012 at 10:25 pm

        And the coop has a solar spotlight so we can see the chicken entrance..just was looking outside and remembered..but a weasel could still get in (if he had a crossbow grappling hook and liked spelunking)

         
  2. kymber

    July 10, 2012 at 6:45 am

    bahahahahahahaha! i have known a few weasels who liked spelunking – oh bahahahahahah! i just re-read my comment and it sounded pretty harsh. not the way i meant it to be.

     
    • eagergridlessbeaver

      July 10, 2012 at 7:01 am

      ah, no harm no fowl (pun intended)..there are worse things than caring about the chickens, totally cool kymber!

       
  3. Lee

    July 15, 2012 at 11:55 pm

    That’s really frustrating to lose a second chicken in such a short period of time. I hope the others stay safe.

    The “happy raccoon” posing on the box cover made me laugh. When we first moved in here we were overrun with feral cats, so we borrowed a neighbor’s live animal trap and caught them one at a time and had them fixed. We caught a couple raccoons by mistake as well. They were much less happy than in that picture.

     
    • eagergridlessbeaver

      July 16, 2012 at 8:19 am

      Yeah, since the attacks we have been ever vigilant on closing everything up tight..so far so good and since I harassed the raccoons we have not seen them on the trail/security camera.
      I don’t imagine a trapped racoon would be ‘happy m..I picture more of a tasmanian devil! Hehe

       

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