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Chicken killer and egg thief can't be caught in box trap!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by acorn265, Oct 30, 2013.

  1. acorn265

    acorn265 In the Brooder

    Oct 28, 2013
    We have a fox or a very smart raccoon (or some sort of animal that is big enough or smart enough) that will occasionally grab a chicken at dusk before they are locked up at night, and steel cat food. We have tried to catch him in our box trap but he is to smart - we put the trap up at our neighbor's house, and every night he stole the bait and got away. He get's the bait, moves the trap, and the door is always closed. One night he stole the bait, drug the trap about 20 feet off of the neighbor's porch and into the driveway, and then flipped it over. We can't use snares or dead falls or anything that would hurt it because we have cats that like to get caught. Anyone have ideas???

  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana

    I don’t know what bait you’re using but it sounds like it’s getting the predator’s attention.

    This doesn’t show it real well, but I wired the bottom of the trap to a piece of plywood to keep it vertical so they couldn’t turn it over. Then I built the box to slip over the top so the only opening was through the front of the trap. That way they can’t get to the bait from the back, sides, or top.

    I don’t know what they predator is or where you live to even know the possibilities. There are elements of fox and raccoon but neither sounds just right. My first thought is a bobcat, though bear, badger or wolverine may be a possibility. It could easily be a lot of other things.

    Good luck!

    Edited to add:

    If you can get a game camera or security camera set up, that would be great to help identify the predator. Or you might try scattering flour to try to get a footprint or set the trap and bait over raked loose dirt, again trying for a footprint. Also, look for poop to help you identify what it is.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2013
    2 people like this.
  3. JackE

    JackE Crowing

    Apr 26, 2010
    North Eastern Md.
    I like what Ridgerunner advised. I will add to that. Take a piece of hardware cloth, and wrap it around the bait. Then WIRE that, inside the back of the trap. Make the animal work, to get the bait, making it more likely it will be trapped.
    1 person likes this.
  4. acorn265

    acorn265 In the Brooder

    Oct 28, 2013
    Thank you both! I think we will try the modifications if we have any more problems [​IMG]. Sometimes we used an egg for bait, and other times we would use a plastic container with cat food in it. We are in VA, so a bobcat might be a possibility - hmmm... I hadn't thought of that. The trap in Ridgerunner's picture looks exactly like ours. Thanks again!
  5. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

    Jan 27, 2007
  6. acorn265

    acorn265 In the Brooder

    Oct 28, 2013
    Very interesting - and smart, too! Thanks, hopefully soon pesky coons and such won't be a problem anymore! [​IMG]
  7. Bullitt

    Bullitt Songster

    Jan 16, 2012
    Do you have a dog? A good dog will keep predators away from your chickens.

  8. Bear Foot Farm

    Bear Foot Farm Crowing

    Mar 31, 2008
    Grifton NC
    I think your trap is too small and the door is closing on the animal.
    Try a larger trap, or some leghold trps set around it
  9. acorn265

    acorn265 In the Brooder

    Oct 28, 2013
    yes, we have a beagle mix but he doesn't have access to where the chickens are, and he is 9 years old so he doesn't always wake up when there is something around [​IMG]. Our trap is rather small, a regular sized coon can't stand up completely straight in it so that might be the problem. Thanks for the advice [​IMG]
  10. ken-t

    ken-t In the Brooder

    Jan 6, 2013
    Just a word I use a can of tuna for bate its a strong odder. just set the open can in the trap as far as you can. good luck

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