The raccoon wars are stalemated for now. The fruit trees and chick house are in contention.
The raccoons won some and lost some. So did we.
Most of my apples are gone. One Asian pear tree was stripped in a single night by raccoons.
The lines of electric fence went up. The other two Asian pear trees remain untouched.
Next year the electric fence lines will expand. The apple tree is still a challenge, but now that we know the electric fence works, the challenge will be met.
That gives a happy ending for the fruit crops. It leaves my pullets at risk. Their house is on the other side of the garden and workshop from the fruit trees.
I built the chick house around 20 years ago. I’m not a great carpenter, even worse then, so it isn’t quite square. I’ve patched it numerous times over the years in an effort to keep the wildlife away from my chicks.
The wildlife keeps winning. Between the raccoons and black snakes, the last couple of years have been disasters.
Next year will be different. I’m remodeling the chick house.
There are now solid plywood walls. A tongue and groove floor is in place. The doors are replaced or fixed. A solid door sill went up. This should keep the black snakes out.
Although chicks like to be warm, they out grow much of it in a couple of weeks. They raise a lot of dust growing feathers and dropping manure. Ventilation is imperative.
The chick house had hardware cloth tacked up around the eaves and over the windows. It wasn’t secure. A couple of raccoons discovered this.
The remodeled house has a hardware cloth ceiling securely tacked up and under the plywood walls. The problem window is now secure with more hardware cloth over it and slats around it tacking the cloth down.
A roost is in place. It sets on a foundation for easy removal when the heat lamp is in place. Plenty of floor space is left for a water fount and feed trays.
My remodeled chick house and I am ready for next spring and new pullets.