I think my chickens are killing each other

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by kell, Jan 9, 2011.

  1. kell

    kell Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2009
    Monroe, CT
    Help. I had 8 hens and a rooster. They are nine months old. Four Araucanas, two RI Reds, and two Barred Rock hens. One Barred Rock rooster. I live in CT.

    This week two of my Araucana hens died. I have an insulated 4x6 coop and 4x8 covered run. We have had a lot of snow and they haven't gone out into our yard to forage for about a month. Coop has hay on floor. I feed laying pellets and cracked corn. They always have fresh water. I keep a 40 watt bulb on in the coop 24 hours a day to keep water from freezing. I only lock them in the coop overnight when it is very cold.

    One hen had its entrails eaten out of it in the run. The next day another hen was dead in the coop. There was a lot of blood spatters all over the walls, and my rooster had blood stains on its feathers. No predator got in.

    I need help with this. I have never had this happen before. Are they cannibalizing?

    Thank you

    Kelley
     
  2. smith2

    smith2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 5, 2008
    Paris, TN
    I can't guess without more info. But for entrails to be hanging out and that much blood it sounds like a predator. Sometimes they can be hiding in some unbelievable places. I had a friend that just lost one to a possum that had been hiding in the coop for several weeks and eating the chicken food. Then, one day it attacked and went back to hide. They almost never found it. I have heard of cannabilism but not to that degree.
     
  3. JustAChickenLittle&More

    JustAChickenLittle&More Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 25, 2010
    Florida
    I agree with the Predator. I woke up to the same thing one morning, and sure enough, we watched the next night, and my husband was fighting with a big Female Raccoon. [​IMG]
     
  4. ranchhand

    ranchhand Rest in Peace 1956-2011

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    No doubt at all, you have a predator getting in. So sorry you lost the hens. [​IMG]

    What is the run like? Can you post a bunch of pics of the coop and run? Maybe one of us can spot where it's happening. It sounds like a weasel family critter or a raccoon at this point.
     
  5. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    Quote:x 2+

    Pics would be a big help. I think your space is tight for the number of birds and weather conditions, but still sounds like a pred. at this point. I'd expect to see a lot of feather picking etc. before any fatalities if it was the chickens doing it.
     
  6. kell

    kell Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2009
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    I put photos up. There appears to be feather picking now. I noticed it today. There is really no place a predator can hide, but as I do live in a rural area, you never know. The chickens are picking on another Auracana hen, and she has feathers missing around her tail. Skin showing. I saw them pecking at her.
     
  7. kell

    kell Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2009
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    I will take more photos now and post them.
     
  8. kell

    kell Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2009
    Monroe, CT
    Wouldn't the predator eat the chicken? The second one I lost wasn't missing any parts. Also, the chickens are not afraid or nervous in any way. I had a predator problem on my farm in NC, and this doesn't seem to fit the bill, but I am totally open to whatever you all come up with.
     
  9. 44Wolves

    44Wolves Here is Your New Title

    Jun 28, 2009
    "I put photos up. There appears to be feather picking now. I noticed it today. There is really no place a predator can hide, but as I do live in a rural area, you never know. The chickens are picking on another Auracana hen, and she has feathers missing around her tail. Skin showing. I saw them pecking at her."
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~
    That is the pecking Order.
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    Sounds like a Raccoon. What are your local predators?
    `````````````
    Pics! Ew.... and Yay!We can HELP!
     
  10. kell

    kell Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 21, 2009
    Monroe, CT
    We have it all. Skunks, foxes, coyotes, and raccoons. Hawks too!
     

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