How To Participate

We are looking for volunteers with back yard chicken coops to run cameras as part of our research project.  We will provide the camera trap and show you how to use it.  Here is what we will ask you to do:

  1. You must have a backyard chicken coop but no other farm animals (confuses the ‘treatment’ effect).  Dogs, cats, and bird feeders are ok, but no livestock or other poultry please.
  2. You must be willing to come to the 24hr NRC Grand Opening event 20-21 April and return the camera trap with you so we can register the data that day.  We will have lab staff and volunteers available to register your data from 6pm on Friday till 4pm on Saturday.  Please let us know approximately when you will be coming.
  3. Photos taken by your camera will be used to ask scientific questions about predators, and will also be used to promote NRC science during the opening event. They will be registered in the e-mammal database, which will later be integrated into a new camera trap photo archive at the Smithsonian.  If you would also like to take the pictures home with you, please bring a USB memory stick or camera memory card we can put them on.
  4. We will bring the camera to your house and help you set it up in the first location.
  5. We will also ask you to move the camera to a new location on your own after 2 weeks.
  6. In total we would like you to survey 2-3 types of sites: a back yard chicken coop, a back yard without a chicken coop, a patch of nearby woods.
If you would like to participate please contact Dr. Roland Kays at

Photo by woodleywonderworks


11 thoughts on “How To Participate

  1. Pingback: The Great Chicken Coop Stakeout « Research & Collections

  2. Pingback: The Great Chicken Coop Stakeout « NC Museum of Natural Sciences Blogs

  3. Judy Hart

    I would love to participate> We just lost Four chickens to Hawks during the day, after three years of chicken bliss. We now have 12 chickens in our backyard coop and newly enclosed run. They were previously free ranging during the day. No longer.

  4. Elane Nunley

    I started out with 7 hens last spring (free range) and I’m down to 2 (kept in a wire enclosed stall constantly now unless I “chicken-sit” with them). Have no idea what got them-birds taken 2 at a time (except once)-no bodies found, just piles of feathers-and the last 2 were taken out of a pen. I would love to participate BUT I have horses as well so I’m out of the running. I’ll be at the opening anyway because I’m volunteering so I’ll come by and check out the results of your research. Good luck.

  5. I would love to participate as well. We have a small backyard flock of 3 Brahma hens. I just sent an email.

  6. Brenda Edenfield

    We would love to participate. We have 5 hens (hope to get 3-4 more this spring). We are just outside of Clayton in a subdivision with woods extending from our property line all the way to the to the Neuse River. Chicken coop is located approx 20 ft from back property line.

  7. Pingback: Let the Games Begin « The Great Chicken Coop Stakeout

  8. I have about 25 hens that free-range between my back yard and my neighbor’s. They’re very self-reliant, and have been very happy with this spring weather so far! We haven’t seen a lot of predators lately – in the past 3 years we’ve seen coyotes elsewhere in the neighborhood, a pair of foxes in our front yard (3am), a small oppossom eating our chicken food, and various small hawks flying around the area.The chickens have reacted to the hawks by disappearing under shrubs. It was very interesting to see their reaction!

  9. Andrea Biondi

    If you do this again, we would love to participate!

  10. Sara

    Is this going to be an annual thing, or perhaps on ongoing study? Or was this only a one time study for March -April 2012?

    • rolandisimo

      We hope to continue this in the future through our eMammal program. If you have your own Reconyx camera we could probably get you going now, otherwise check back in the future.

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