Chickens eating mice....why don't they tear them up with feet and beak?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by aart, Dec 2, 2014.

  1. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I know some chickens can and would swallow a mouse whole.....
    ....but mine don't seem to do that even tho they are full grown large fowl birds.

    I threw a live mouse in the coop this morning and it was fascinating to watch them chase and catch it (don't judge) only took about 5 minutes for them to kill it.....but.....they've been running around with the darn thing for an hour and not sure they will ever actually eat it.

    Wonders why they don't hold things down with their feet and tear them up with their beaks to eat???
     
  2. mortie

    mortie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    my guess is because most of the time when they eat things it's just a quick peck motion. That's what they know how to do. They haven't learned to hold things with their feet and tear because it's not super common for them to have to do that. That's my theory. They're not really well suited to eating large items are they lol. Mine will grab a mouse and shake it trying to tear pieces off. They got a mouse this summer and like yours, they ran around with it for quite a while.

    In this pic you can see her shaking it. It was with a fast shutter speed so you can see the mouse actually twisted around her beak as she's shaking it
    [​IMG]

    It refused to come apart so then she just ran around with it to keep it away from the others.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2014
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Great pics, beautiful bird, logical explanation(still drives me nuts)...thanks!
     
  4. matt44644

    matt44644 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree with Mortie.I've seen wild and barn cats eat mice,but if my cats catch a mouse once it's dead they are over it.My chickens caught a lot of frogs last summer but i never seen them actually eat it.
     

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