Broody Hen Gone from Nesting Box

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by BarbiD, Sep 20, 2016.

  1. BarbiD

    BarbiD Out Of The Brooder

    86
    1
    31
    May 23, 2016
    Hayes, Virginia
    When I went to let my girls out this morning, my broody Cochin is gone from the nesting box! No sign of feathers, blood or anything, just one of the eggs she was sitting on had a slight dent in it. My husband and I have walked all 5 acres around our house and cannot find her body. Our nesting box is on the outside of the coop. What got her????
     
  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

    25,645
    1,863
    463
    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    With no sign I'd say coyote. Any way you can move the box inside the coop so you can secure it?
    Sorry for your loss.
     
  3. BarbiD

    BarbiD Out Of The Brooder

    86
    1
    31
    May 23, 2016
    Hayes, Virginia
    A coyote can open a nesting box lid and grab a chicken? I didn't even know we had coyotes in Virginia...but apparently we do. I checked the County Animal Control website. I know we have fox, raccoons and birds of prey. Never thought about a coyote....I guess that's why all my other girls who were roosting were okay?
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    35,693
    9,184
    656
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Is there not a secure external latch on the nest boxes?
     
  5. chickens really

    chickens really Chicken Obsessed

    That sounds more like a Raccoon to me....Not a Coyote ......
     
  6. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

    21,533
    5,003
    421
    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    Coon. Locks are the only way to be sure a coon can't open and get into something. They are very intelligent and agile. And they love to eat chickens. Secure the nest boxes ASAP. You have a coon that knows how to get into your coop, it will be back.
     
  7. BarbiD

    BarbiD Out Of The Brooder

    86
    1
    31
    May 23, 2016
    Hayes, Virginia
    Sadly, no. We've been having a hard time finding a latch that will work. Our nesting box lid extends out over the box a few inches to keep the rain out. We live on the coast and often have driving and sideways rain bands, especially now with hurricane season upon us. My husband had to make a new lid this week because the old one was starting to warp, so we have a new one out of Fur. We currently have a short bungee cord on it stretched tight and hooked on a nail. Any ideas, pics, etc. about what we could use is appreciated!!
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    35,693
    9,184
    656
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2016
  9. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

    4,535
    1,056
    306
    Jul 19, 2015
    Eastern Shore, MD
    How high up is the nest box? I'd make sure to make sure nothing is nearby for the predator to stand on to access it. If it has to climb onto the top to access it it won't be able to open it. You can also try using a couple safety hook and eye latches (the kind you have to press in on to open)
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by