Do Rhode Island/Barred Rock sex link cockrels kill Silkies?

Alo

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Jul 22, 2019
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I came home and found a two month old silkie down in the middle of my coop, with it's head off.

I left my hen out last night...

I left home right around sunrise, and didn't notice anything...

Is that something a three month old cockrel would do?

Tonight I put my hen with them, in case a rat killed the Silkie while I was sleeping; but should I seperate the Silkies from my cockrel tomorrow?

I'm raising the rooster to guard my little birds.

I'd hate to kick my cockrel out with my hen, because I'm not sure he's big enough to deal with my cats; but if he's killing Silkies, I'll have to chance it...
 
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penny1960

Yippity do Da Yippity ay
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Hard to say if the picked on it yes could kill it yes they can be savage cannibals maybe if it was down ? I would hate to think that but I do keep my 4 silky in their own coop I have three outside cats that stalk the silkie they have a tractor nothing can get in it
 

bobbi-j

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What time of day did you come home? Has your cockerel picked on the silkies before? What is your setup like? How much room do they have in the coop and run (in feet x feet)? There is really no way to say for sure what happened. Head gone, my first guess would be a mink, but in my experience, they'll kill more than one bird at a time. Maybe a rat or weasel. Could a raccoon have reached in and got it? There are so many scenarios.
 

Alo

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Jul 22, 2019
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I plan on getting rid of my chicken hunting cat in the morning.
 
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Alo

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Jul 22, 2019
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Thanks for your time Penny,

I was sure hoping the Silkies would out grow protective custody.

No, I live in Hawaii; and we don't have minks or raccoons...

I had a mongoose or two eat the heads off of 11 chickens in less than a half hour...

So it wasn't a mongoose either.

I got home around 4 or 5.

It was either a rat or my boy, or all of them...

But they seem to all like each other, and I haven't seen any signs of aggression from the roo. He bites at my hands for attention, and stops when I pet him. He's really getting a nice personality.

My cockrel is trying to breed everything, but the hen is too big and the Silkies too small.

I hear him bothering them, but he doesn't seem mean.

I have them in a 4x4 of kennel with a 2, 2x4 upper levels. They're small, so it's not crowded yet.

I put dirt from my yard in with them, and giant passion fruits (the size of coconuts) in with them too, and after they eat the fruit, worms and bugs attack the composting husk: the dirt is so full of high protien critters; they aren't hungry at all.

The more I consider it, the more likely it seems like a rat.

The other birds were walking on it, but no peck marks were showing.

Just neck bone showing on an otherwise unharmed bird.

Do chickens eat chicken heads, without pecking the body?
 

Alo

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Jul 22, 2019
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I'm pretty sure I figured it out.

My hen was laying outside on the ground where she's been laying eggs lastnight, and most of the Silkies were inside on the middle nesting level when I checked them at bedtime; but one was probably laying beside her foster mom in a blind spot, on the ground inside of the fence where a rat got it, while the hen couldn't help: and that's the one I found this evening.

I'll bet I'm right.
 

Alo

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Jul 22, 2019
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I don't think I thought this through...

The Silkies seem like they're getting independent, and they didn't mind when I left the hen out the last two nights~

Are they gonna be just cute little snacks for life?


What's a nice broody bird that's big enough to fight a rat?


(I'd like to be able to hatch lots of rare eggs off grid.)
 

bobbi-j

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They are at the age when they start becoming independent of mama. I’m trying to understand your setup (pics would be great!) Your hen is out in the open at night? It’s surprising she hasn’t been picked off yet. Chickens are basically defenseless at night, no matter the breed. That’s why they need to be in a secure pen.
 

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