a bobcat, of all things

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by shangrawla, Sep 23, 2011.

  1. shangrawla

    shangrawla New Egg

    Sep 21, 2011
    I am so sad. I let my three, two-month old chickens out to roam around a bit when I got home from work around 5:00 last night, like I have been doing for a few weeks now because they love it so much. We live up in the Oakland Hills and have a large, fenced in yard with a couple of different levels and the chickens had gotten a bit bolder each day, exploring and going a little bit farther from the coop. So I spent some time with them like I usually do before coming back in to change. I guess I was letting my guard down a little because it seemed like they were so happy and I was so close by... and I had the back door open and I could see out into the backyard from the window, so I didn't think anything could happen. I was upstairs for maybe 15 minutes and kept looking out the window, checking to see that they were okay, when all of a sudden something just seemed off. Really quiet and weird. So I came downstairs and two of my chickens (Cindy, a Buff Brahma and Midge, a Barred Plymouth Rock) were laying right next to the open back door, they seemed terrified and were really quiet, even when they saw me. My heart sank because Stella (another Barred Rock and the fearless leader of the pack), was not with them. I looked around frantically, hoping that maybe Stella had flown over the fence and would hear me if I called out. Nothing but eerie silence. So I went all the way up to the back of the fence where I immediately spotted a pile of feathers and a bobcat a few feet away. It was just so shocking. Stella had been so boisterous and happy when I came home. Now it's so sad and the other chickens seem kind of lost without her because they were always following her lead. And to top it off, the bobcat has already been back 3 times this morning, scaring the chickens and looking for more. Needless to say, the chickens are staying in the coop. And a Wildlife Animal Control specialist is coming this afternoon to catch the bobcat and take it away.

    RIP Stella. I'm so sorry I didn't protect you.
  2. Shayna

    Shayna I [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]

    Aug 2, 2011

    Sorry for your loss. It's a terrible thing that happened, but they were out doing what they loved. I'm sure they were happier having some freedom, rather than being caged all the time. You sound like a very good chicken mom and do what you can for them. A very unfortunate event that happened though. So sorry.
  3. Capvin

    Capvin Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2011
    Lake Placid, FL
    I am very sorry to hear what happened to your chicks. We have lots of bobcats where we are and, in fact, get pictures of them on our game cm at least once a week. Like you, I leave our chicks in their run for most of the time except for about one hour a day when we let them out. Because we are very aware of the dangers we stay right with them and so far we have been lucky that nothing terrible has happened. It is obvious that you were doing everything correct and were looking out for the safety of your chickens and it was really just bad luck. The problem is that even if they take the specific bobcat away there is a great likelihood that there are more around and they will try and get into your coop and run so it would be a good idea to make sure that it is secure and safe. I am sitting here talking to my wife about your situation and we really sympathize because we know that even though we are out right there with the chickens that a bobcat could burst out of the brush and woods, grab and chicken and be gone before we could do anything about it, I am sure that you feel terrible but I can assure you that you really did everything possible to keep your chicks safe
  4. Nicophorus

    Nicophorus Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 19, 2011
    Central Florida
    I had similar problems with Bobcats, they are very hard to deal with.

    My best advice is clear away all the brush and low tree limbs. The bobcats I had where useing heavy vegetation to hide in before making their kill. Make the bobcat cross a lot of open terrain with nothing to hide in before getting to your chickens and that will help.
  5. Silkiesandco

    Silkiesandco Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 17, 2011
    Canada eh?
    Sorry for your loss. Poor Stella. Hope it gets better without that bobcat [​IMG]
  6. southerndesert

    southerndesert B & M Chicken Ranch

    Jun 17, 2011
    Morristown, AZ
    sorry for the loss and it is never easy farmer or pet keeper, that said the cat WILL return and you need a plan to deal with it.

    I would kill it or trap it to avoid losing more of your girls.

    Best of luck to you...
  7. Agdketo

    Agdketo Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 14, 2009
    Aledo, Illinois
    In most states, if a species ( such as coons and the like) are harassing livestock, you have the right to shoot them. That's what I do. Surprisingly, the only animal that has really killed any of my chickens, was my aunt's short haired german pointer. I would've shot him, but that would've started some problems, lol. The best thing to do would be to contact the local DNR officer and get up to date with the state laws, and if you can get away with shooting bobcats that are killing your chickens, I would get a gun. A good gun to have would be a .22 rifle. actually a 10-.22 rifle. Holds ten bullets, it's semi-automatic and ammo is cheap. May not be the most powerful gun, but that bobcat won't come back any time soon. I've had many critters try to get to my girls and my geese and ducks, but i have one heck of a dog. He'll smell a coon a mile away.
  8. Cockadoodledon't

    Cockadoodledon't Chillin' With My Peeps

    Would recommend a shotgun over the 22 . Larger pattern and the pellets dont travel as far as a 22 bullet. Also...makes a louder "BOOM" [​IMG]

  9. Agdketo

    Agdketo Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 14, 2009
    Aledo, Illinois
    Cockadoodledon't :

    Would recommend a shotgun over the 22 . Larger pattern and the pellets dont travel as far as a 22 bullet. Also...makes a louder "BOOM" [​IMG]

    Yeah, I'll have to agree. I guess I'm just so used to using the .22 i never thought of a shotgun. I'd recommend a 20 gauge. Doesn't have alot of kick to it.​
  10. JD4570

    JD4570 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Might I recommend #1 buckshot in that 20ga. I has a dense pattern and plenty of punch without the kick.[​IMG]

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