I have a predator problem

forewe

Hatching
11 Years
Apr 10, 2008
3
0
7
Montana
Hi, I'm new here, but not to chickens and other fowl. I have been having serious problems with predators, mainly mink, they are horrible little critters that that can wipe out a coop in a short time. I have tried several different things to get rid of them but they keep on coming. I am looking for any suggestions on what to do. I would be grateful to anyone who could help.
 

lurky

Songster
12 Years
Jun 4, 2007
4,811
8
231
Western MA
People on here have used a baby monitor to know when the chickens need help. If your a good shot
otherwise a have-a-heart trap small enough to keep him in. Also tighten up yor coop.... If you can find where its getting in.
 

Buff Hooligans

Scrambled
12 Years
Jun 11, 2007
12,148
366
311
Instead of getting rid of the mink, which will just be replaced by other predators like raccoons, etc., why don't you make your coop and run predator-proof? Surely mink can't get through well attached hardware cloth and predator-proof door latches...?
 
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justusnak

Flock Mistress
12 Years
Feb 28, 2007
6,016
21
286
South Eastern Indiana
I too have had a mink issue. I lost all my ducks last summer to Mink, and several of my favorite chickens to them this year. ( Always happens to the favorites) I put a baby monitor in my coops. I can listen to every sound. This is also helping with keeping the neighbors guineas out somewhat.
The mink I shot, was makeing his rounds about 4:30am. The first 2 nights, I missed him. Then, one morning, 4:30 on the dot, the hens were screaming...I ran out there in my nightgown..boots, and a gun and a flashlight. I had him cornered, IN the coop. Took a few shots, but he finally came out...BAM. Got it. They are mean, smelly, and can get in a 1 in hole. They will dig inder walls...and chew through wood if they are hungry. I have set traps, have a heart traps. Nothing yet. But, no minks since I shot the one either. I say...definately get a baby monitor...and keep your gun loaded, and ready. Good luck...I hope you get your predator. Oh, and if you use a trap...bate it with fish...stinky sardines...put the bait in a small onion sack..and tie it to the back of the trap. This way it has to tug at the bait, thus setting off the trap.
 

forewe

Hatching
11 Years
Apr 10, 2008
3
0
7
Montana
Thanks for your replies.
My coop has been redone... no holes. I have shot a couple mink. I have also hired a professional trapper, and got rid of 3 that way, and my dogs have even gotten 2 of them. BUT they keep on coming. I really don't like mink. I haven't lost any chickens recently, but I see lots of tracks to where they are trying to get in, also have seen them scurring away. I just want them all gone so I don't have to worry so much.
 

Buff Hooligans

Scrambled
12 Years
Jun 11, 2007
12,148
366
311
Wherever you've seen them trying to get in, triple-barricade those areas.

Truly, even if you get rid of this particular batch of minks, there will be others along to fill the vacuum. Your coop is just too tasty an attraction.
 

blackturkeys

Hatching
11 Years
Apr 13, 2008
1
0
6
HI, this is my first post. I live in the suburbs of NY city. on Long Island. A flock of 7 wild turkeys showed up in the last few months and everyone on my street has become very smitten by them. We were very excited when two of the hens nested on my property. One hen was sitting on 19 eggs and was diligently sitting on her nest and we were hoping to have little poults around soon. Unfortunately, some predator killed the hen during the night---she was found a few houses down, against a fence without her head and possibly her neck too.(I didn't look that close)-feathers everywhere. All 19 eggs just disappeared WITHOUT A TRACE! We are all heartbroken. I know there are raccoons in the area, as well as owls, rats, opossum and hawks. We think it was raccoons but wouldn't there be some egg shell left? Also, can these hens lay more eggs this spring? I realize they are wild and may have different egg laying vs. domestic poultry.
 

ivan3

spurredon
12 Years
Jan 27, 2007
4,511
210
291
BOCOMO
forewe wrote:
I just want them all gone so I don't have to worry so much.

Well, you might try making some box traps on the cheap. The following is a video of a fella constructing one (not polished presentation but enough to improvise from) that uses a Big Victor Rat trap. A person could build ten of these for the cost associated with a few standard `jaw' traps. As has been mentioned, other minks will eventually show up. However, the overall frequency of predation will decline. Our raccoon population has finally bottomed out in the past year owing, in part, to diligent removal (avg. 30 per yr. down to 8 in `07 and none so far this year - and we usually take ~10 from Jan-Mar breeding season). Welcome, and good luck!


blackturkeys wrote:
We think it was raccoons but wouldn't there be some egg shell left? Also, can these hens lay more eggs this spring? I realize they are wild and may have different egg laying vs. domestic poultry.

Sounds like a raccoon. Yes, they will carry away eggs and munch them where they feel comfortable (find broken eggshells at the base of a rotted out Hickory snag - coon is quite likely hiding out inside the dead tree).
It is early in the season and turkey hens will start working on another clutch if their first is destroyed.
By the way, welcome! (do you have Black Spanish? Royals and Slates here).​
 

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