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Something is tunnelling into my chicken run ?!?!

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Wondered if any of you could help me out with this ? or have had a similar experience.

Last couple of nights SOMETHING has been tunnelling under the paving slabs that my chicken's run sits on to get into the run

Very small, neat tunnels so not a fox

Dug a trench along the side that was affected and sunk 6 inches of chicken wire in yesterday

THis morning - another tunnel at the corner.

Whatever it is has had to do a lot of digging !!! I'm going to start taking the food in at night now

Could it be a rat ?

It's bloody determined, I'll give it that as our soil is heavy clay where the run sits...


Any advice or suggestions welcome - thanks

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thanks for all the replies.... :D



Have got the council rat man coming on Thursday for a look

Lifted the feeder and swept up any traces of spilt food when the girlies went to bed.

As a temporary measure I've laid chicken wire weighted down with bricks flat on the grass around the perimeter of the run - not that they won't knaw through it the little *%$£s


Mr H has got some perforated sheet metal offcuts from work so a trench with that sunk in may deter them ?? I hope ??

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Flamin rat - found the one bit of wire where there was a teeny tiny gap (basically cos I had to do it in the dark with a torch) and got in again :evil:


Didn't get any food as I had lifted the feeder in AND swept up...


Have been round again and moved the wire in and secured it right up to the run with bricks and tent pegs - we shall see tonight.


Can't do the sheet metal till Saturday as we're both usually out at work during daylight hours... will keep you updated tho'

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I don't think he'd be keen after the experience he had with the rat he caught. :?


Aye - I read that thread :D


Well an update - it didn't get in last night !!!!

Rat-man is coming tomorrow (hope the council are OK about me having the girls though :oops: )


Do rats attack the hens then ? or is it more about the feed and the eggs ?

(sory for daft question)

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A really good question, not daft! Yes, rats will chew just about anything, and that includes hen legs. So, def. not a good combination and it'll have to be the rats that go! You are right to take action. If you have one, there'll be loads breeding nearby. Don't let the ratman make you think it's your fault. Having hens is great, and it's not just them that attract rats. Of course they want an easy food & water source (so you are right to take the feeders in). But, it could just as easily be a compost heap on another occasion, or a good shelter somewhere unrelated to hens, they are just everywhere. So, don't take blame (but expect some & stay calm). We rid our hen area about 10 months ago & haven't had any since, it's worth doing.

Good luck! :)

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the rat-man has been - he was lovely.

Left a bait station (so the girls can't range) and 2 rather wicked looking spring traps (when I said I didn't mind emptying them) which he reckoned were way better than the bait.


We shall see in the morning when I (hopefully) have a dead rat to prise from the trap jaws :?


Bit of a hypocrite for a vegetarian aren't I ?

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We shall see in the morning when I (hopefully) have a dead rat to prise from the trap jaws :?


Bit of a hypocrite for a vegetarian aren't I ?


your're not a hypocrite unless you eat the dead rat... :wink:


getting them out of the trap is not a nice thing to have to do..(rubber gloves recommended) I've never managed to do it without first poking the (obviously) dead rat with a stick just to check that it hasn't managed to survive a broken neck and half-severed head... (well - you never know!!!)


good luck...



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Clare, we had a big problem with Chilli bringing frogs into the house...alive & dead :?

So I went to John L:ewis & got a bag of really jangly bells for his collar,plus a MASSIVE metal star with his name on from eBay which the bells clang against.


He looks a bit of a tart, but the local wildlife is breathing a hugh sigh of relief :lol:

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