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Where did my chicken go - pile of feathers?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I'm missing a chicken tonight - a full grown buff orpingtion.  We found a small pile of feathers and a few scattered feathers leading away from it into the woods.  Our yard is fenced though, so it's not a dog or coyote.  It's too dark to find if the chicken is still hiding somewhere, or completely gone, although we tried to look.  No sign of blood. 

What could have done this?  The predators we have on hand that could access our yard are hawks, bald eagles, barred owls, and bobcats.  Raccoons I suppose, but they would have left a mess I think.

Any idea?

Redmond, WA
Scott

The sunny (in the summer) Northwest (Redmond, WA) - 28 hens, 2 roosters
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The sunny (in the summer) Northwest (Redmond, WA) - 28 hens, 2 roosters
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post #2 of 9

why would you rule out coyote?
coyotes will jump a 4 footer with ease,
was the chicken in the coop when went missing?
any pics of the crime scene?

weather will be weather,   weather ya like it , or not
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weather will be weather,   weather ya like it , or not
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post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Because this is a 6 foot fence specifically designed to keep coyotes out.  Our flock was free-ranging and the rest made it back to the coop.  There are no feathers near the fence either.  I will get pics in the morning.


Edited by ScottK - 9/18/09 at 8:47pm
The sunny (in the summer) Northwest (Redmond, WA) - 28 hens, 2 roosters
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The sunny (in the summer) Northwest (Redmond, WA) - 28 hens, 2 roosters
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post #4 of 9

ok, then we can rule out coyote, was this at dusk?
or at dark

weather will be weather,   weather ya like it , or not
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weather will be weather,   weather ya like it , or not
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post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 

We discovered it at dusk, but it could have happened earlier since we were out.  A barred owl has hung out near the spot of the attack in the past (in a maple tree and we had a bobcat looking into the yard just last week, although a neighbor tried to shoot it.  Hawks and bald eagles are common overhead, but never succeeded before.

The sunny (in the summer) Northwest (Redmond, WA) - 28 hens, 2 roosters
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The sunny (in the summer) Northwest (Redmond, WA) - 28 hens, 2 roosters
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post #6 of 9

That hawk that has been picking off my birds has been striking in the afternoon - around 3:30 - 4:30 p.m.  We did have an owl earlier in the year - came at night only.  So, if I had to guess . . . based on the fact that you have a high fence and only a pile of feathers . . . I'd guess hawk or eagle.

post #7 of 9

I agree probably a bird...hawk or eagle, what ever it is will be back though for another easy meal. Good luck.

Best darn kid in the world, and some great fowl too.
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Best darn kid in the world, and some great fowl too.
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post #8 of 9

Full grown adult bird... trail leading to woods, that sounds like classic coon to me. Crafty buggers can open doors and just leave a trail of feathers. Beef up fort knox, since they will be back, and often return with family. A family of coons destroyed my flock one year in Everett.

I doubt it is a bird of prey as an adult chicken is too heavy to fly away with and you would find a pile of feathers with a body in the middle. I've only lost silkies to hawks myself.

Need egg candling reference pics? Click HERE!
2011 Coop build! Click Here!

 

I'm no expert, there is always something to learn, and my birds are livestock, so... yes, I may be quite blunt. wink.png

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Need egg candling reference pics? Click HERE!
2011 Coop build! Click Here!

 

I'm no expert, there is always something to learn, and my birds are livestock, so... yes, I may be quite blunt. wink.png

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post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

I guess we will look for a body in the morning.  This was a 7lb chicken and no holes under the fence, but a coon could be on our property still since it is densely wooded in that area.  This is a high tension predator control fence, so unlikely it climbed it with a chicken body.  Odd thing is most birds of prey couldn't carry the chicken off either.  That's why I was wondering about bobcat.

The sunny (in the summer) Northwest (Redmond, WA) - 28 hens, 2 roosters
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The sunny (in the summer) Northwest (Redmond, WA) - 28 hens, 2 roosters
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