Any chicken farmers out there?Would

08/01/2014 - 14:19

Any chicken farmers out there?Would appreciate any info anyone might have regarding faina (marten) attacks on chickens. We lost two earlier this year and another three last night after making a “Fort Knox” of our chicken coop. Has anyone dealt with these animals successfully as in trapping, killing, dissuading, etc?Neighbors have no coop, chickens live outdoors all day and night, however they have a dog that protects them. Is there a Hertz rent-a-dog service anywhere as we are here just half-time and cannot have a permanent dog.Any suggestions other than buying our eggs appreciated.Thanks,Fred



I don't know about martens but foxes are our problem. We dealt with this by making sure that the chicken netting goes at least 50 cm underground otherwise they burrow under it. Setting it in concrete would be even better. Foxes (and martens, for sure) can easily climb netting so you need the netting to stick out horizontally at the top, also 50 cm. Actually, we went the whole way and put netting right over the top of the chicken coop. We find that foxes, at least, don't show up during the day, so the chickens can be let out to peck around. Even so, I have another, less secure, netting fence around the garden to discourage daylight raids by foxes.

Thanks for your response. We had previously pretty well fortified the coop and stable with link fencing, chicken wire, barbed wire, cement, etc. In this instance the marten had burrowed under the corner of the foundation of an adjacent shed at an angle and came out inside the coop. He/she must have an engineering backround to figure out the proper angle. After inspection, it was virtually the only place the animal could have penetrated the coop. We are now in the process of fortifying tha adjacent foundation and looking into electric fencing. Being a stubborn sort, I'm not going to be deprived of fresh eggs at breakfast by some nefarious varmit.Thanks again for the info.Fred

We live in the California desert near Palm Spring half-time and we have coyotes also, actually both types; four legged and, since we are not that far from the southern border, the two legged type, however we do not keep chickens there. We have a small "truck farm" (very small truck) raising veggies, fruit, chickens for the eggs, and wine grapes for home wine making, here in Tuscany. We realize that wildlife has to subsist also, however these faina do not kill for the meat, they just remove the head, drink a little and scat, leaving some of their own scat behind. In Texas, I know you have all sorts of varmits and critters, including blister bugs which infested the area of Texas where I spent a year at a Naval air base in the 50's.In response to your other posting, as non-EU citizens, we have to get an extended visa from an Italian consulate in the US to stay longer than 90 days. If you wish to become a resident you must demonstrate the ability to financially support yourself so as to not become a burden on the Italian social system and have sufficient health insurance for the same reason. EU citizens can establish residency in, I guess, in any other EU country by just registering with the local authorities. In my case, being married to someone who has an dual citizenship, US and EU, makes it easy for me to "tag along."If you access the search function on this website there is a wealth of information on this subject. There are also a few on the site that have gone through the process of gaining residency and might be able to offer advice.Being new to a forum, one might also check out to see if one recognizes anyone including oneself.cheers and welcome to the forum.Fred    

Thank you for the great post Fred. You have my dream life! I remember the term "blister bug" but I haven't encountered any for so long, I forget what they are like.
I know you didn't think I expected you to gift the wildlife with your chickens. Ha! I just feel sorry for the beasties. They have a hard time in the Dallas Fort Worth area. There is so much conflict and competition for space. I work for a city garden and they are forever having armadillos, possums, raccoons and other creatures removed. We had foxes for a while, and bobcats.

Well, I have certainly seen more than enough. *sigh* It's upsetting to me because I get all riled up over the things someone says, and then I'm tempted to jump in the middle. But that would surely make me guilty of the very behavior I despise. I really do wonder why this happens in forums. It doesn't happen much on Facebook. It doesn't happen on the blogs I visit, unless they happen to be political. But this is the second forum for ex pats in Italy, and I haven't been back to the other one because people were so nasty to each other.

Someone said a forum is like going into a pub (English bar) and talking to those in the corner that look very scary, loud or raucous. People you really would never in the real world want to know or talk to…   I’m not over keen on Facebook people (my youngest is an avid member), jokes, politics or religion, but accept some people on forums are and I need to weigh that up when reading the posts… smiley Stick to them nd get your information, but remember to give it back at some point...

With the new reinforcements to coop and stable, any future intruders will need shovels or explosives. Fortunately, since we give our chickens to a neighbor each fall when we return to the US, and buy new ones each spring, we still have fresh eggs daily, thanks to them. The only caveat has always been that they do not serve us chicken when we eat at their place.Fred