Dh let the chickens out this morning before he left for work. This evening, about 6:30, about a half hour after I got home, I went out to shut them up for the night. It had been dark for probably half an hour. A hen was missing, so I got a flashlight. She was next to our compost heap and a possum was sitting there eating her. I went and turned on some outside lights and grabbed a shovel. I was going to kill the little bugger with it, but he ran through a small opening between fence sections, the chickens can't fit though it, but he did. And he's the biggest possum I've ever seen! I knew we had a possum, but I didn't realize he was coming into our yard so early in the evening, and thought he was just eating our compost. My oldest son is supposed to shut up the chickens before it gets dark, but he forgot today. She was already stiff, there were feathers pulled out all around her, and flesh was missing mostly from the entire back of her neck, head (but the skull, vertebrae, and beak were still there) and one breast. Is it likely that this possum killed her or did I just catch him eating some other predator's leftovers? We do have a lot of stray cats in our area, but none have bothered the chickens before. We have a full-grown rooster, and I can't imagine him letting a cat kill one of his hens. They're Delawares, so he's not a small rooster. He's almost as tall as my 2 year old daughter! Because the hen's body was completely stiff, I think she must have been dead a while. It's cold here, but still above freezing. It's been raining all day, in the mid 30's. Any ideas? I live in the city, so no guns. I'm so sad! We started out with 3 hens and the rooster last August. These girls lay a beautiful egg every single day, maybe miss a day every 2 weeks or more. We lost one a few months ago, and now we lost another. I'm down to one hen and one rooster who needs more than 1 hen! I had just made then aprons last week b/c he's been mating them too much!