Materials produced by a Bradford plastics firm are being used to make what is believed to be the world’s first fox-proof chicken coop.

High-density polythene click and fix plastic planking, made by Tatra Plastics Manufacturing in Norwood Green, Wyke, form an integral part of the new hen hut being produced by small engineering company, Mark Francis, in Chichester, Sussex.

The walls and roof panels are made from Tatra planks and metalwork with the roof edging and cap made from a plastic coated galvanised steel sheet, which the firm says stops foxes and badgers from chewing or digging their way in – something to which wooden chicken houses are prone to.

Mark Francis said the design and materials used or the houses would reduce the loss of birds from attack by predators.

He said: “Badgers are even worse than foxes for raiding chicken houses because they’re built for digging and have really powerful claws. However, neither badgers nor foxes are able to dig or chew their way in through the plastic walls, floor or roof panels. So far as we know, these are the first vermin-proof chicken houses.”

The click and fix plastic planking can be steam-cleaned or power washed and are quick drying. The perches can be removed for ease of cleaning.

The current chicken house range caters for up to 48 birds and there are plans for larger sheds catering for everyone from the back garden hobbyist to commercial chicken farmers.