Gone in the night :(

Smashlee83

Songster
Apr 9, 2021
144
395
126
Houston
This morning I came out to the coop to find their food knocked over and a clear disturbance. There were a few small chunks of feathers and my 8 week old cuckoo bluebars are gone. No blood. I cannot find a point where a predator would be able to get in and then also remove two birds without a huge mess. Any ideas what it could be? My only thought is that the auto door may have not closed last night. I'm so sad.
 

cmom

Hilltop Farm
14 Years
Nov 18, 2007
29,295
29,300
901
Florida
My Coop
My Coop
So sorry for your loss. It's hard to say what the predator is but if you have a game camera, put it up because what ever it was will be back and then you will know what you're dealing with. It has probably been lurking and got in maybe because the door malfunctioned. I don't close my pop doors but I have a lot of protections such as electric wires around my coops and pens, good heavy duty netting covering the pens and concrete under the gates. All due to losses from predators in the past. Nothing has messed with the hot wires. Once they get zapped they learn that whatever in on the other side isn't worth getting zapped for. I have a quite powerful fence charger. I want any predator that comes in contact with the hot wires to know it and it will hurt. I think the adult predators teach their young that a bird isn't worth the hurt. Good luck...
 

Smashlee83

Songster
Apr 9, 2021
144
395
126
Houston
Well the predator has been dispatched. Our dog located the raccoons home, he's been an issue for a while now. Hopefully my babies are safer now.
 

Opiumbrella

Chirping
Jul 30, 2021
77
133
78
Well the predator has been dispatched. Our dog located the raccoons home, he's been an issue for a while now. Hopefully my babies are safer now.
So sorry. I went out yesterday morning to find one of my bantam hens and her three day old chick gone. Just feathers. A tiny shift in the fencing caused a crack big enough for something to get in. I'm heartbroken. Such a helpless feeling.
 

HomesteaderWife

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
6 Years
Apr 24, 2015
2,186
8,928
497
Alabama
I'm glad you possibly found the culprit (have you considered learning about tanning, to put use to the dispatched critter?) - game cameras are definitely wise, to keep an eye on potential issues and snooping critters. Unfortunately, dispatching one won't prevent more from returning. So definitely find a way to keep an eye on them, and beef up the pen security as best as you can. I am so sorry for your losses
 

Smashlee83

Songster
Apr 9, 2021
144
395
126
Houston
Another girl gone. I think my door malfunctioned. This was one of my 1 year old darling laying hens we were all so attached to. I am going to stop using the door for now until I can figure out what's happening and my husband is going to get more ammo today.

So sad.
 

Birdsonghill

Songster
Feb 1, 2021
345
1,727
223
West Tennessee
Security is the best way to prevent losses, you can not kill everything that might be attracted to your chickens. If you can not trust the coop door or have a secure enclosure you will lose chickens. An old rule of thumb is if you see one coon their likely is ten relatives close by. Not to mention foxes, minks, bobcats and more. Even Opossums kill and eat chickens commonly. Use a trail camera, get a secure door and check it nightly and make a secure enclosure/run around the coop. Electric charged wires help a lot, but are not 100 percent effective. A neighbors dog can be as sneaky as a coon, as well. good luck and best wishes for your flock.
 

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