Secure the feed and the wild birds will leave quickly

  • No poison to kill other wildlife
  • Prevents wasted feed
  • The constant source of feed means faster growth, more eggs, and healthier chickens
  • Saves money on feed
  • Chickens learn to use quickly




The Best Method of Keeping Wild Birds Away from Chicken Coops


Poisons that find their way into wild predators, bird netting that deteriorates or causes the coop run roof to collapse when it snows, fake predators like owls that constantly need moved to keep them effective, none of these methods will work as well as simply putting the chicken feed into a treadle feeder that has a spring loaded door and a narrow and distant treadle.

Not all treadle feeders are the same though as many have wide treadle steps that can be overwhelmed by massive numbers of wild birds.  The models that have a narrow and distant treadle step work best as not enough birds can roost on the step at once to trip it and if they did the couldn’t reach the chicken feed anyway.

A large counterweight is also a good feature as it provides mass that must be moved, something that a five pound chicken does easily but wild birds weighing just ounces won’t every be able to operate.

Check out our review pages on the various treadle feeders by clicking on this link.


The best feature on a  treadle feeder is a spring loaded door, something that few treadle feeders on the market have.  The spring provides extra pressure to hold the feeder door tightly closed so that the wild birds can’t just push the door open.   Some of the prettiest feeders on the market don’t have this feature and while the treadle feeders are sharp looking they can’t keep wild birds out of the feed which is why we want to spend our hard earned money on such a product.

Treadle feeders are very simple, an inward swinging door operated by a narrow and distant wooden step on a treadle bar with a spring holding the door tightly closed.   When a five pound chicken steps on the treadle the door opens easily yet a wild bird standing on the ground in front of the door can’t push the door open and a dozen wild birds roosting on the treadle couldn’t reach the feed if they managed to get the treadle tripped.

 Our favorite brand is this model made by The Carpenter Shop.  It is all galvanized sheet metal, easy to assemble, holds around a half sack of feed, and best of all it has the spring loaded door, a narrow and distant treadle, and a massive counterweight.  The customer reviews are amazing, over 130 four and five star reviews and the people are not only pleased, many are ecstatic at having their wild bird or rat problem solved.




Keeping birds out of a coop can be easy or difficult

  • Simplest solution, buy a treadle feeder
  • Enclose your entire coop in small mesh chicken wire
  • Cover the existing coop with bird netting
  • Try scarecrow type methods such as fake birds of prey, CDs hung on string
  • Netting gradually deteriorates and scarecrow methods become ineffective

“Wild birds can easily eat more feed than a flock of chickens.  While they are smaller in size there are a lot more of them and they tend to gorge on the feed before leaving.”




What Works, What Doesn’t?

How to Stop Wild Birds from Stealing Chicken Feed


Wild birds will vastly increase your feed costs and provide enormous opportunities for disease to decimate your flock if backyard chickens.  Keeping them out can be as simple as purchasing a good quality spring loaded chicken feeder or you can attempt to fence the birds out or frighten the birds away.

The simplest and surest method to control wild birds is to simply deny them access to the feed.  Birds have to eat a lot and often, they won’t survive hanging around your coop if they can’t get to the feed .

The best treadle feeders have a spring loaded door and a counterweight to ensure the wild birds can’t overwhelm the treadle with numbers or simply push the door open.


The best wild bird proof feeder is actually this  model sold as a rat proof feeder, manufactured by The Carpenter Shop in Oklahoma City.  The feeder came on the market in early 2012, starting out as a wooden feeder but by 2013 it had morphed into a sheet metal feeder that became the market leader due to its innovative design, spring loaded door, and massive counterweight system.  One of these feeders is going to cost you $75.00 to $100.00 depending on size and how far it has to be shipped but it is the surest method to eliminating wild birds from your coop.

 Another method is to  try to fence the wild birds out of the coop using small mesh chicken wire.   Chicken wire by itself doesn’t make a good barrier wire for a chicken coop because a larger dog or racoon can easily rip through the wire as it is merely twisted together.  People tend to use larger mesh wire that is welded together but the larger mesh also allows small wild birds through.  You can go to the expense of covering the welded wire with small mesh chicken wire or even hardware cloth if you have that kind of budget.

Next up is bird netting or deer netting that can be found in most garden departments or seed stores.   The netting will stop most birds but the netting deteriorates over time and small birds will become trapped in the mesh.




 The next method is trying scare the wild birds away from your chicken coop and chicken feed.  People have tried using fake owls or other birds of prey that are mounted on a post near the flock.  The wild birds eventually lose their fear of the decoys and many times your chickens are afraid of the owl decoys too.  The decoys do need to be moved constantly to trick the wild birds into thinking they are real.

Some have had success using shiny objects tied to strings such as CDs or aluminum foil or aluminum pie plates that will twist and flutter in the wind.  The wild birds will eventually realize there is no danger and the clutter is unsightly if you are the type to keep a neat yard and coop.

If you have a pack of young boys around buying a few b b guns will cut down on the wild bird numbers but there is a risk anytime you have kids and b b guns involved.


Another issue is if you allow your birds to free range or leave your coop door open during the day.  The wild birds will fly right in the coop and gorge on the feed.

 Other than the stolen feed the wild birds will leave their droppings everywhere and aside from the smell and filth the disease danger is enormous.  Wild birds carry many, many, varieties of parasites and disease, some of which they are carriers of without becoming sick themselves.

If you use the bird netting or deer netting and live where there is lots of snow make certain that the coop top is well braced as the netting will allow the snow to accumulate and collapse the chicken run roof.