Fox Attack in Broad Daylight

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by rileysgranny, May 5, 2011.

  1. rileysgranny

    rileysgranny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 17, 2008
    Tennessee, USA
    We just had our very first loss due to predator attack! I am home sick from work and DH is outside with the chickens, letting them free range, as he usually does in the afternoon. I heard a big chicken commotion and ran out the back door to see what was the matter, just as DH rounds the corner from the front of the house. As I walked toward the chicken coops I saw feathers everywhere. Then our Jack Russell comes running past me, nose to the ground. DH says a fox ran past him, stopped to readjust what he had in his mouth, when he realized it was a chicken. The fox ran off into the woods with the JR following close behind. I rounded up the rest of the chickens and got them back in their pen to see who was missing. DH had already put the bantams back in their pen with their 3 new babies and locked them up, but said he thought he would just let the "bigs" stay out for a while. Looks like Mr./Mrs. fox got one of our RIR and pulled out a big hunk of feathers out of the back of one of our beautiful Ameracanas (sp?). We tried to track the fox, thinking we'd find more feathers, but couldn't find anything. The hen with the missing feathers seems to be OK, despite the patch of missing feathers. She is hiding under the coop so we will have to wait until she roosts to pick her up and check her out. We also found some black & white feathers that belonged to one of our bantam roosters and noticed that he is favoring a foot, so we'll have to check him out too. He must have tried to defend the hens - what a good rooster!
    This is our first loss to a predator and we've had chickens for 4 yrs., so I guess we've been lucky. Guess we're gonna have to keep a close watch on everyone now. I hate to shoot a fox, but once he/she has messed with my chickens it might as well be prepared to die!
     
  2. N2Shown

    N2Shown Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 28, 2011
    Northern California
    Did the Jack Russell come back??
     
  3. rileysgranny

    rileysgranny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 17, 2008
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    Yes he did. He's not really much of a tracker, never been trained to do so. He did a lot of sniffing around in the woods, but that's about all.
     
  4. cecilia1959

    cecilia1959 Out Of The Brooder

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    The very same thing happen to me yesterday and I screamed and screamed and the fox let my EE go and I let the dog go after the fox and she chased the fox off. This has happen time and time again. I love to let them free range in the afternoons, usually about 2 hours before roost time. I have big chicken pens, but the eggs are so much better letting them eat bugs and grass. I have vowed never to let the fox feed on my flock and I let them out. I now let them out and sit and watch of them with the dogs close by.
     
  5. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 31, 2008
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    We had a similar attack on Easter about noon. Hubby yelled at the fox and it dropped the blue orp. I think having larger chickens makes it tough to get the mouth around:) no damage done, but now we are afraid to let them free range without a shootin'iron handy. We are still looking for the right dog to replace our Cleo so that is no help.[​IMG]
    Cleo always worried about a patch of brush about 1500 ft away. We are thinking "den".
     
  6. rileysgranny

    rileysgranny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 17, 2008
    Tennessee, USA
    We cleaned the EEs wound and put a big blob of Polysporin on/into it, covered it and wrapped with vet wrap. When I examined the wound I think it's NOT a puncture wound, but looks like when the fox ripped off the feathers it pulled a hunk of hide off with them. She seems fine today, but the vet wrap came off and the other hens seem to like to peck at the wound. I have a tube of Nu-Stock and am getting ready to doctor the wound with it tonight. Anyone have experience with Nu-Stock? And any ideas on another way to cover the wound that might stay on longer?

    We didn't let the chickens free range today and we checked them in their pens over and over again to make sure the fox didn't try to get to them through the fence. I know that we will have to keep a sharp eye out for a long time, but we have agreed NOT to let them out unless we can stay out with them.
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2011
  7. sidney

    sidney Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My dog attacked my Jersey Giant and she had an open would on her back. I put antibiotic on it and covered it with a piece of fleece. I cut a piece of fleece to cover her back and a little longer on the sides. I measured where her wings were and cut 2 slits. Slipped her wing through each slit. The fleece protected her back and I could lift it up and check on the wound. I left it on till her fathers grew back.
     
  8. rileysgranny

    rileysgranny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 17, 2008
    Tennessee, USA
    As I went out the back door to open up the coops this morning, I looked to the left and there stood the fox looking at me. Guess he/she thought it was gonna get a good chicken breakfast and I put a stop to it by showing up at just the right time! We dug out the old electric fence that my Daddy gave me before he passed and DH installed it around both chicken coops/pens. I laughed out loud when I read on it that it is good for 10 miles of fencing - my Daddy always did everything in a big way! Anyway, we are hoping it will deter any fox or other creature that gets too close!
     
  9. Wisher1000

    Wisher1000 Bama Biddy

    I highly reccomend Duct Tape to cover wounds. Just clean and dress the injury, keeping the feathers on either side of the wound dry and free of greasy meds. Then put the duct tape over the wound and stick it to the dry feathers on either side. It will not stick to the ointment but will hold tight to the feathers long enough to keep the other birds from pecking it and for it to heal over. The tape will allow air to reach the sore and will come off on it's own in a week or so. The only caution is to try to keep an eye out for fly larve if it is hot and flies are an issue, but that is for any open wound.
     
  10. akpeeps

    akpeeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 25, 2008
    Wasilla, Alaska
    Just lost one of my EE pullets yesterday to a fox. I couldn't believe it was out so early in the day and so close to people. It was maybe 10-20 yards from the barn. Our friend's daughter was helping clean the barn and saw it come out of the woods. Hubby yelled at and it ran right towards a couple of my pullets that were free ranging about 50 ft from the coop. It grabbed the Sussex as it ran by and hubby chased it down to the road and it dropped her a couple of houses down. Fortunately, she's fine with only minor puncture wounds on her back. We did a head count and all the rest were accounted for so we started rounding up the rest. One of the girls must have snuck off cause the fox was back within an hour or so and got her. The girls found what was left of her down by the road when they were going home. Hubby found lots of feathers less than 10 yards from the coop. [​IMG] Camped out last night to see if it would come back, which I'm sure it will. I have a couple of friends waiting that I'm going to introduce it to....Mr. 12 gauge and Ms. 22.
     

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