6 Week old chickens slaughtered

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Sad Chicken Mom, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. Sad Chicken Mom

    Sad Chicken Mom New Egg

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    Has anyone ever found all of their young chickens dead outside of their pin? I found all 6 of my 6wk old chicks pulled through their pin and beheaded. Whatever it was, was strong enough to reach in the pin pull each one out, bite or pull the heads off and leave all of the insides. The heads were not consumed as they were near the bodies. The pin door was not bent and there are no holes, they were literally grabbed and pulled out through the small metal wire openings. Oh and this happened in the daytime hours/early morning (8:00) a.m. my husband had just went out to give them feed and fresh water.
     
  2. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Raccoon or weasel is what it sounds like.

    The best prevention is 3' of hardware cloth around the bottom of the coop to prevent anything from reaching in.

    Sorry for your loss. [​IMG]
     
  3. Thespoiledchicken

    Thespoiledchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]

    I'm so sorry for your loss. The same thing happened to me when I first started keeping chickens. Wire around the bottom was too large and the chicks were pulled right through, piece by piece.

    If you use hardware cloth on the bottom foot of the run it will no longer happen. In my case it was a family of raccoons that did the damage.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. OR4-hmom

    OR4-hmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm sorry for your loss.
    I haven't lost any to predaters but my guess would be raccoon. I have 1x2 welded wire on my runs and my outside roost is 2 feet inside the feet to keep then away from critters reaching in to try and snag them.
     
  5. OR4-hmom

    OR4-hmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm sorry for your loss.
    I haven't lost any to predaters but my guess would be raccoon. I have 1x2 welded wire on my runs and my outside roost is 2 feet inside the pen to keep them away from critters reaching in to try and snag them.

    My new pens have 1x1 welded wire.
     
  6. nova022

    nova022 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would guess raccoons. My coop and run are comepletely enclosed in 1/2 inch hardware cloth but my big fenced area is 1" x 2" wire and I have seen my chickens stick their heads through the holes to reach grass and weeds on the other side. I only let them in this area when I can be there to watch them, but I can see how a raccoon could easily grab them.
     
  7. Sad Chicken Mom

    Sad Chicken Mom New Egg

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    I do have racoons on my property...but this happened in the daytime. I know its not impossible but is it a highly likely possibility?
     
  8. Mattemma

    Mattemma Overrun With Chickens

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    Maybe dogs. I have seen possums out early am and pm.Lots of things like to kill chickens.Even cats go after them at times.Will have to build a really secure coop/run to prevent future loss,and even then it is never 100% predator proof.Heck,sometimes it is people killing the chickens!
    Sorry for your loss.
     
  9. OR4-hmom

    OR4-hmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    One of our coons comes out as early as 3:00 pm. It knows the neighbors leave cat food out all the time. The possoms are more nocturnal here, I think critters learn the schedules of the neighborhood , more dogs out in the morning, etc.
     
  10. Nambroth

    Nambroth Fud Lady

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    Raccoons are opportunistic. They are also not strictly nocturnal, and will adapt their feeding behaviors depending on need and when food sources are available. Pulling them out through the wire is a very raccoon thing to do, sadly. Chicks are on the menu of nearly every critter out there and if you are able, I recommend adding a lot more extra protection until they are grown.
     

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