fox, coyote, raccoon or owl?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by beanmcnulty, Aug 18, 2011.

  1. beanmcnulty

    beanmcnulty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 10, 2011
    Baltimore, OH
    We have had something(s) skulking around at night and can help with these clues? Here it is from the beginning. We have just about everything that would like to eat poultry around us. About a few months ago, noticed something tried to rip off hardware clothed coop window- they were not successful but left a bend that i am not even sure i could do. Garbage was tipped too. Earler this week lost my first bird- 7 week old BR poult that had just started going out. She was missing at tuck in time- I had gotten out a bit later than usual. I couldnt see well enough in the coop to make sure she got in but hoped she had and locked up. Next day still no poult and found a trail of her feathers off into the brush, no blood or body.
    Yesterday a rogue rooster found our flock and hung around all day. Have no idea where he came from, but I didnt put him up for the night. This morning lots of feathers strewn over the large tractor in which I house our batch of ~12 week old Dels. Looks like he roosted on top and something got him? It is about 7 feet tall- A frame. The garbage has not been touched recently.
    First instance I would almost definitely say raccoon. Recent happenings since the garbage wasnt eaten, i am thinking fox or coyote. Any thoughts? Also will a coon-size trap get a fox or are they too smart for them anyway?
     
  2. violetsky

    violetsky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 14, 2011
    Huntsville, Alabama
    I doubt it was a fox. I think they carry off their prey, same thing with coyotes. Feathers everywhere might be a dog, maybe it was an early morning attack. The bent cage
    wires I would guess a raccoon. I had problems with my neighbor's dogs. When they attacked the flock some birds were just missing, some bodies were halfway to the neighbors house and they tended to maul and make a mess of things. The dogs usually try to dig in first so look for holes, but will paw at doors too and chew some. I also had a barn skunk for 2 years that did nothing until one time I forgot to slide a board all the way shut leaving a very small gape. The skunk killed and ate 3 half grown birds and one large goslings. The only thing he left was some portions of wing. He killed everything in the coop, eating one bird entirely and beheading and the rest. Again no feathers spread around. I think dogs tend to be messier than natural predators, playing more than eating. Dogs can also scratch wires so they bend and panic a bird off its roost.
    Some chickens seem to know they are out of reach and others just bolt.
     

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