fox-proof 'open' hen house entry ?? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Hi there, I live in Australia and have 20 very spoilt chooks. They free-range over our 25acres during the day, but need to be kept safe at night from foxes. Due to work commitments, we are not always at home when they need to be locked in for the night, and, as a result, have lost a few to foxes. Does anyone have plans for a doorway/hatch/hen house entry that they can let themselves in and out of, but that also deters foxes?

-- Andrew Daley (, February 03, 2001


Andrew, Your chooks could go through holes smaller than a fox, so I would use A section of woven wire fenceing or cattle panel, that had holes the right size, over an opening in the building. makin it large enough that several could go through at the same time. Just an idea but it should work.

-- Kevin in SC Mo (, February 03, 2001.

You also might look into automatic chicken house door openers. I believe they make electric ones and solar ones with timers, etc. Go here for an extensive list of links to companies that sell poultry and supplies ~ maybe you can find one in one of their catalogs? Good luck!

-- Wingnut (, February 03, 2001.

Fixing the link: here

Wingnut, you forgot the " " around your link.

-- J F (, February 03, 2001.

Andrew,I have thought this over for a while and I can think of no entry that would bar a fox and not also bar a chicken.Here in the states we shoot or trap out foxes that have become problems.Being a non-native species.I think it might be the best route in your case.Trapping may be tough because of the chance of catching a paddymelon or some other not too bright marsupial.Is there a fox irradication program in your state? If you can live with limiting your chickens range or rotationaly "graze" them as it were.You could run electric fence wire low to the ground to keep the chickens in and the foxes out.Then rotate the area as the graziers do in New Zealand.The wire wouldn't keep out carpet pythons and such though.I presume you are in the south? An alterative might be to start raising emus instead, but then there is the draw back of them kicking your dunny down.(....grin...)

-- Greg (, February 04, 2001.

Sorry to be so long getting back to you. Been out of touch for a few days. Anyway, I believe an old issue of Countryside had plans for a homemade solar-operated chicken door closer. Looked pretty simple. You'd reset it when you opened the door in the mornings. Probably if you post a request for the old article, someone will be able to tell you which issue it was in. These folks really know their Countryside. Hope this helps.

-- Laura Jensen (, February 07, 2001.

The only way to keep them completly safe is to put a 6 foot high fox proof fence all around your land. I appreciate that that would be extremely expensive, but foxes come on my land day and night and they always take at least 3 chickens. Pretty soon you'll have none left. My chickens used to 'put themsleves to bed' about 7.30 and i'd close the door behind them, but foxes are very smart and just get here earlier. I have now fenced off a smaller area to let them free range over and only let them out onto the rest of the land when they are being supervised.

-- Jane Edwards (, June 01, 2001.

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