Rat & Mice Issues
I love backyard chickens but I’m definitely not a fan of mice and rats. Just because you have chickens in your backyard, doesn’t mean you also have to have mice or rats in your chicken coop. Obviously it’s not the chickens themselves that attract mice or rats, it’s the spilt or poorly stored grain or pellets that can attract these unwanted visitors.
Rodents are looking for food, water and shelter. If your chicken coop provides a secluded corner that your chickens can’t access, food and water, these little creatures might just decide to stay. Interestingly, chickens are actually omnivores which means that they eat both vegetable and meat materials. Chickens happily eat insects, worms, carcasses as well as seeds, grains, weeds and other plant material. This means that a mouse that is a bit slow running through the coop, might find that he becomes a light snack for one of your chickens. I wouldn’t however, rely on your chickens to keep your mouse problem under control.
Owners of backyard chickens should always take preventative measures to keep away these undesirable visitors that can bring with them a range of diseases.
Keeping mice out of the chicken coop
While the first, logical thing to do would be to prevent mice actually entering your chicken coop, this is much easier said than done! Mice can fit through very small spaces, so small that we may overlook potential access points because we assume that they’re too small.
If you have a fixed chicken coop made with iron walls, a concrete floor and fine mesh, you may be able to keep them out. But if you’ve got a mobile chicken coop or you regularly free range your chickens, there’s likely to be a tiny gap somewhere for these determi