You might need to use a number of different tactics to stop predators getting at your chooks. The first thing to do is to make sure that your birds are shut into their coop each night. This will mean that if a predator gains access to your garden, your chickens will not be wandering around unprotected. A fox can make short work of a chicken that has been left to wander about the garden at night.
The next thing to do is take steps to boost the security of your garden. Are there any areas that predators may be able to get in through? If your garden is very large, then you might instead want to secure a specific chicken area. You could do this by erecting a wall or some high fencing.
Eglus have fox resistant skirting on their base to help protect your chooks
Another tactic is to use lighting. Nocturnal predators may be scared off if a bright light is shone in their direction. To achieve this effect, you may want to install burglar deterrent lighting. Motion-sensing equipment can be used to shine a bright light on your chooks’ coop if movement is sensed nearby. Whilst this equipment is intended to deter humans, it can have a similar repelling effect on would-be predators.
When safeguarding your chickens against predators, it’s useful to know what you’re up against. As well as the obvious culprits like snakes and large wild mammals, it’s important to understand the threat that mice and rats pose to your birds, particularly to eggs and young chicks. Rats will eat both eggs and chicks, so it’s important to keep chicks and their mothers in a rat-proof area. You may need to keep them indoors for a while. One of the key strategies to avoid rat problems is to reduce the attractiveness of the coop. Removing the freshly laid eggs each morning will help prevent rats finding them. If eggs are left for days rats may find them, eat them, and remember that your chickens’ run and coop is an excellent food source.