Cutie is no more.

TheRyanFamCluckCluck

Hatching
8 Years
May 13, 2011
4
0
7
First post - thanks in advance for all your wisdom!
So we arrived home just at dusk this evening to find our petite bantam "Cutie" dead on the sidewalk. Her head and neck were thoroughly chewed but in tact and both of her breasts were perfectly carved out. Everything else in tact.

The rest of the flock, which we let out to free range just two hours earlier, were in the coop unharmed.

So, to recap:
- one bird dead
- breasts gone, head and neck chewed
- all other birds are fine
- the predator had full access to the rest of them as the run door was WIDE open as was the coop.

What did it?

Owl?
 

chickathon

Chirping
8 Years
Aug 12, 2011
135
5
93
West Virginia
I think it has been a fox. But I have seen raccoons out at dusk just right before it turns completely dark. I think it just depends on how hungry they are. I hope you catch what did it. It will be back now that it has found an easy food source.
 

Capvin

Songster
8 Years
Apr 13, 2011
1,007
64
178
Lake Placid, FL
Any one of 5 or 6 predators that I can think of could have done that type of damage especially if it was at or near dusk. That would include neighborhood dog or cat, hawk, owl, raccoon...etc...etc. The point is that whatever it was will be back for more and your choices are to watch them when they are out, keep them in, or try and trap or otherwise catch whatever did it. My suggestion would be to let them out but watch them with a 22 rifle in hand and see if something happens.
 

tinydancer87

Songster
8 Years
Apr 5, 2011
293
15
134
SE Georgia
I had some pharoah quail once that got loose; the cat got one and it looked just as you described when I found it...head and neck chewed on but breasts eaten.
 

MEchickenfarmer33

Chirping
8 Years
Jul 29, 2011
461
0
99
Maine
I honestly don't know. Not a fox or coon because they would kill multiple birds. Hawks or owls would kill just one but they usually take it with them to their nest. I hope u catch the culprit and put a stop to it
 

TheRyanFamCluckCluck

Hatching
8 Years
May 13, 2011
4
0
7
Update for you all:
the next morning the girls where definitely spooked. they stayed together in the run and kept stretching their necks high to look around. We let them out of the run Monday evening but were out there with them. Same thing tonight.
We did find a pile of feathers at the site where Cutie was originally attacked.

I have to believe it was a hawk or owl due to the fact that all birds were out of the run and the run AND coop door were open. A four-legged predator would have gone back for more, no?
 

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