How can I find out what kind of predator killed my hen?

chickenmom22

Songster
Mar 12, 2018
47
79
105
Yesterday, I lost a young, seven week old Pullet to an unknown predator. I was letting the chicks out in the middle of the day so they could get some fresh air, and 30 minutes later, I went out to check on them again and there was one chick missing. All the others looked frightened, and were hiding in the back of the coop. The adult hens did not seem bothered at all. I could not find the body of the chick anywhere. I also could not find any feathers or any blood. I'm guessing a hawk got her?? What do you guys think? I have been keeping all the chickens inside the coop today (they have a small area outside to walk around in that has a roof, but I feel bad keeping them all in there all day. They weren't happy about it, but I guess it's just something they will get used to in time.)
 

Kessel23

Hi Bug
Feb 6, 2018
2,523
68,100
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Wisconsin
It was most likely a hawk but a fox, snake, coyote or other predator could have done it too, it is pretty easy for predators to make a 7 week old chick disappear without a trace. But assuming you do not have massive snakes by you, it was most likely a hawk, maybe a fox.
 

Kessel23

Hi Bug
Feb 6, 2018
2,523
68,100
1,182
Wisconsin
Sometime foxes don't leave feathers behind, we had a 8 week old pullet taken by a fox resonantly and we couldn't find any feathers that had been left behind. I'm guessing a fox or a hawk. possible a weasel or like animal depending on the area.

Foxes are excellent at taking birds and not leaving a trace, they will run in and grab the bird and run out with the bird in their mouth, usually still alive. They like to get to safety before worrying about killing it. I have seen them make adult ducks and chickens disappear without leaving a feather behind.
 

chickenmom22

Songster
Mar 12, 2018
47
79
105
It was most likely a hawk but a fox, snake, coyote or other predator could have done it too, it is pretty easy for predators to make a 7 week old chick disappear without a trace. But assuming you do not have massive snakes by you, it was most likely a hawk, maybe a fox.

Thank you for the help. Sounds like I need to really get to work on predator proofing the yard. I don’t want whatever it was to come back
 

ashlandco

Songster
Mar 31, 2017
290
436
132
I’m sorry for your loss:( foxes live under our barn (no livestock in it) and they take other peoples chickens and eat them under there.
 

MANNA-PRO

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