Do your chickens eat pre-dead animals?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Nutcase, Jan 26, 2014.

  1. Nutcase

    Nutcase Chillin' With My Peeps

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    While getting rid of our rat problem I've found several freshly dead rats (poisoned) in the chicken run. Why didn't the flock eat the rats? Do your chickens only go for live prey?
     
  2. escape

    escape Out Of The Brooder

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    I use mouse traps in the barn. I always make sure they are well away from chickens.

    The other day, I found my chickens playing the "chase me" game with a dead mouse in a mousetrap. How they got ahold of it is a mystery. The mouse HAD to have lived long enough to crawl out where the chickens could grab it (trap and all).
     
  3. Mtn Laurel

    Mtn Laurel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My girls enjoy live prey - small snakes, mice, frogs. Possibly a rat is over their preferred size for prey.

    As the rat had been poisoned, wouldn't the poison have impacted the chicken had they eaten it? I've read of this occurring with poisoned mice being eaten by cats and the cat then dying from the poison.
     
  4. Scott H

    Scott H Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Poisoned rats will poison your chickens if they eat them. Poisoned rats will usually head to water. Do you have water in the run?
     
  5. Shalom Farm

    Shalom Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A poisoned rat will poison a chicken if something is ingested from the first poisoned animal.

    Most of the time, chickens peck at something interesting and of course the most interesting thing of all is things that move! :D

    "Most" Chickens that eat things with fur on them will have caught the creature while it was moving. A clump of fur isn't as interesting and upon first peck, probably not tasty to investigate further as well. An injured animal with blood or meat showing will generally earn interest dead or alive.
     
  6. Nutcase

    Nutcase Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes there is water in the run but since the baited areas are far away from there I hadn't expected to find any rats in the run. The rat's body was perfectly whole and obviously untouched, yet lying in the doorway of the coop (nowhere near the water). In the past they have attacked healthy live rats and just the other day they tried to kill a magpie-lark.
     
  7. Scott H

    Scott H Chillin' With My Peeps

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    When they drink it does them in but not instantly..
    .
     
  8. Nutcase

    Nutcase Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes we've had quite a few come looking for water...since we have redone our feeding system things are much better and we will soon have gotten rid of all the rats.
     
  9. bluefrog87

    bluefrog87 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My guess is (lucky you) they simply don't like rats. It's like the kid that doesn't like mac and cheese. Except this time the mac and cheese had arsenic. (arsenic is not really used any more)

    Most modern rat poisons are anti coagulants (blood thinner / typically Warfarin). If your birds ate it, They probably die of internal hemorrhaging in large doses If they did. In small doses, you have blood thinning eggs for 2-4 weeks which could also be dangerous. The safe side would be to throw out the eggs for about a month. If you see uncontrollable bleeding from small cuts or more than normal bleeding from your chicken this may be a result of rat poison.

    While the chicken eggs would probably have a low dose of it and not be therapeutic level it is a "high alert medication" in any medical text book and is very complex to take with a lot of drug interactions that can be a severe medical emergency. Ask anybody on it, they will give you an earful how much the med stinks.

    However your rats nest may be near your chicken coop. They like to die near there nest, food, or water source. Mostly near their nest. They are going to their favorite places.(The bar, buffet or home.)
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2014
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