do chickens eat their chicks???? where is my chick??

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by amberroswell, Aug 3, 2010.

  1. amberroswell

    amberroswell In the Brooder

    Jul 2, 2010
    north muskegon
    i have a breeding trio, my rooster and his 2 girl which are sisters have always shared a nesting box and the babies belong to both of the sisters so far 5 healthy happy chicks, this morning one chick is gone no trace of him my chickens do not free roan the coop and run are solid there is no sign of anything getting in or out will chickens turn on their chicks?? i did notice that one of the moms was being mean to the youngest one yesterday but no sign of the little guy today i thought that there would be prove left behind if the older chickens ate him, and the only ones in this coop are the 2 moms and the dad, they have been the cutest little family, what could have happened to my lil guy????
  2. patman75

    patman75 Songster

    Cat or maybe another predator?? [​IMG]

    Hopefully he just got lost in his mommas feathers.
  3. jennh

    jennh Songster

    Jun 21, 2007
    Same thing happened to me! I had 5 chicks, then later in the day I could only find 4. That was a week ago. [​IMG]

    Last edited: Aug 3, 2010
  4. amberroswell

    amberroswell In the Brooder

    Jul 2, 2010
    north muskegon
    no predators..well im pretty sure, no sign of anything getting in or out, and what are the odds of the one that went missing is the one that was getting bullied the previous day! can chickens eat 6 day old chick without any sign of blood or anything? the chick just disappeared!
  5. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    Rats or snakes can enter the tiniest holes and both will leave no trace.
  6. i just had 2 3dayolds disapear yesterday in an hour they were just gone cant figure out what happened dont know if it was a snake or one of the mommas or a guinea it is the craziest thing to happen so far
  7. TreeHugger

    TreeHugger Songster

    Apr 7, 2008
    My hens were hatching out peafowl eggs last week. I was extremely upset when I caught one of my hens running around with what was left of one in her beak. I only have hens in my coop & at least one of them in a chick eater. [​IMG]
  8. Chickenmaven

    Chickenmaven Songster

    Feb 6, 2009
    We had two chicks eaten by our flock. Now we put the mama in a seperate room.
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Chickens can swallow a mouse, so they can swallow very young chicks. I tend to agree with Beekissed though, possibly a rat or especially a snake. If a rat killed one and ate part of it, chickens would likely clean up the rest. And with a snake, the chick would just disappear.

    I'm not saying that one of your chickens did not kill it. One of them may have. I'm just saying that even finding part of a chick in the beak of a chicken does not necessarily mean that that chicken killed the chick. Chickens are cannibals and if they see part of a dead chick laying around, they will help themselves.

    I'm trying to deal with an egg eating snake right now and will have chicks in that coop in less than two weeks. I'm very aware of what happens with snakes and eggs and know what can happen with chicks.

    Good luck! This one can be very difficult to solve.
  10. greenfamilyfarms

    greenfamilyfarms Big Pippin'

    Feb 27, 2008
    Elizabethtown, NC
    Yes, they can and will eat newly hatched chicks if they get into the habit of doing so... similar to egg eating. We had a probably with a broody hen turning and killing her chicks in the same way. Very frustrating!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by