Sorry to hear you have a snake issue.. I hope by now it is resolved. Seems that I do, too. All summer long I have had 2 bantam hens trying to sit. Something keeps getting the eggs and I will replace them, it may take a few days to a week, but sure enough eventually the eggs will be gone. One time, I put plastic eggs in a nearby nest and two of the plastic eggs were gone. Well, I thought this solved the problem. It allowed a window of time for another large hen, that stole the nest, to hatch 3 baby chicks which I have safely placed in a brooder with mother hen. One of the first two hens, finally gave up, but I still have a little blue Cochin, bound and determined to become a Mother! Well, days before her eggs were suppose to hatch - something got them - I had been checking on her every evening.. We started over again.. I put her in a pet carrier and set it on top of one of the nesting boxes.. Wasn't sure if she would like that - but she seems bound and determined to sit in that one box, so I hoped she would like the carrier - that way I could shut it up at night and move it to a safer location. Anyway, this past Sunday, I lucked up and found the culprit, (I thought) a 5 foot long chicken snake. We killed the snake and the next day I found that the plastic egg that I had placed in the other nesting box had been crushed. It still looked in tact until you turned it over. I figured the snake had gotten smart and regurgitated it (if that is possible), but was satisfied that the snake was now dead - no more worries.. Everything was going good for about 5 days, until one of the big hens, obviously trying to get into the small carrier tipped it over into the other nesting box and dumped hen out and eggs. When I found the sitting hen, she was on a plastic egg and only had two real eggs out of the 5 that I had set her on and they were cold. HMmmmm, no evidence of the other 3 eggs breaking... I fixed her back up in the carrier - secured it better to keep the big hens out (why they all think they should lay in the same nest, beats me!), and wondered if I still had a snake problem.. Well, this morning, I found another plastic egg, crushed in the spare nesting box... I had placed two hard-boiled eggs in the box, but only the plastic egg was bothered.. I have read somewhere that a snake cannot crush a hard-boiled egg. Not sure if he would be able to chuck it back up, though?? Was wondering if you or anyone else has any ideas on other things I can try. I have not tried the snake away.. I want something safe around the chickens.. We, sometimes, let the chickens out when we are in the garden area and I don't want anything that will harm them if they decide to eat it. Any ideas??
Edited by Hummer - 8/12/10 at 8:15am