Any suggestions: I've lost all but 7 of my chickens (out of nearly 60)

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by cgjsmith, Sep 5, 2007.

  1. cgjsmith

    cgjsmith Songster

    Mar 6, 2007
    I'm so down. I've been told its a racoon. We've set live traps every night for the last month and a half. It goes a week or two between killing then in a night it wipes out an entire coop. We thought we were preditor proof but apparently we are not. because my husband has to be at work at 4 AM and we have 5 kids the youngest being 10 months I can't sit out in the pen. What do I do, relocate? its a huge barn. had three coops & two runs and we were going to put another one in. All my summers worth of buying and hatching gone. I'm ready to give up! any advice would be greatly appreceated. C
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2007
  2. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Feb 28, 2007
    South Eastern Indiana
    Oh no! I am so very sorry....What have you used for bait in the traps? Try Tuna....if its a coon...they like tuna...and marshmallows. Predators seem to be very bad this year...dont give up. Sounds like you have a family of coons there...hope you get every last one of them.
  3. siz8003

    siz8003 Songster

    Jul 31, 2007
    oh wow so sorry to hear :aww
  4. FluffyChickenMama

    FluffyChickenMama Songster

    Jun 13, 2007
    coons are apparently bad in Tn this year.. I dont know how many I have seen on the road dead... I have never seen more than 1 or 2 ever and this summer seems theres one every couple weeks..
    Im sorry for you loosing your chickens but Good Luck catching those rotten coons..
  5. JaciesCoop

    JaciesCoop Songster

    Aug 16, 2007
    I am so sorry about your loss. I'm sure you feel devastated. But if you love having chickens you must try again. I wish I had a magic cure but all I can say is I'm so sorry about this.
  6. JackieK318

    JackieK318 Songster

    Apr 29, 2007
    Not to sound dumb, but think like the coon. Would you rather have half an apple in the trap, which you've probably figured out by now, or have fresh chicken? Being a huge barn, it is hard to say where they could be coming in. They can come in from anywhere - they climb and dig. They're also pretty cunning with latches. I'm sorry for your loss. I have had coons visit the past few nights as well. They got 3 baby chicks, hurt 2 babies and scared the wits out of the big chicks enough to not go home the past few nights.

    I wish you the best. Also, remember chickens aren't the best a seeing at night, but coons are great at it! If you could leave a low light on for the chickens until you figure this out, it might help them get away if they can see.
  7. nuchickmama

    nuchickmama Songster

    Apr 13, 2007
    Rock Island, TN
    I'm so sorry about yor chickens. Where are you in Tn?? If you need more chicks, I might be able to find you some without having to have them shipped.
  8. rooster-red

    rooster-red Here comes the Rooster

    Jun 10, 2007
    Douglasville GA
    Are you setting the traps inside or outside the barn?

    Try baiting the trap with canned cat food, tuna flavor, it seems to work better than regular tuna.
  9. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy Songster

    Aug 26, 2007
    Longmont, CO
    Man, that would be awful. I have 14 new little ones, and I'm afraid of the coons around here. We have coons, skunks, snakes, and a beautiful red fox. I've done everything we can think of, within reason to keep them safe. We even lock them in their coop every night. and have those pad lock type closuers that the part you put the lock though twists to close it. I hope those are raccoon proof. I read in some post where the coons ripped the screen right off the windows. :eek:

    I'm thinking if it were me, I might go for the electric fencing stuff. Maybe after a few good shocks they would stay away.

    Good luck!
  10. DoctorGoose

    DoctorGoose Songster

    Jul 27, 2007
    In June, a coon got my 7 year old BR hen...REVENGE!

    I've been trying to trap this coon for months, and nothing I baited the trap with worked--until I let the vines grow over it, put straw bales around it, and made it look like a den. It didn't have any bait in it, and I was so surprised to find a raccoon in it! I think when I had marshmallows topped with fresh chicken liver it took the bait out without setting it off--so def. go with the marshmallows. I've also read that jam works. I sprinkled a few marshmallows around the trap, so they'd get the idea, and put the rest inside. Also make sure to set it so it will go off at a touch, because sometimes they take the bait to go. [​IMG]

    When I was little, they were selling this stuffed-animal dog that had a motion detector in it, and would bark and set off an alarm whenever it sensed something moving--if you don't have a real dog, maybe something like that?

    We have electric fencing around our entire perimeter, along with the regular "neighborly" fencing--6 ft tall, and such. It hasn't kept predators out completely, except dogs.

    Geese are also great watch-dogs. I know mine, even when they were goslings, would bite our old doggie in the bum, or hiss at the cats if they thought they were being naughty. Once they've established the routine, they hate it when anything deviates. It took ours a while to get used to the chickens, but now they're good pals, and they patrol the grounds then go sit by the chickens.

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