Ideas on the predator?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by LegginMF12, Oct 25, 2011.

  1. LegginMF12

    LegginMF12 Chillin' With My Peeps

    707
    7
    133
    May 2, 2011
    Yucca Valley
    I lost another hen last night/ yesterday evening. I live in the high desert. We have owls, coyotes, and hawks. I am not losing the chickens at a steady rate, they just seem to disappear randomly. I lost 2 within a day of each other, then lost one a few months later and now 3 months after that I just lost another. I was thinking most predators will come back to an easy food source pretty regularly not randomly. I have a 110lb pit bull who roams the yard and absolutely HATES coyotes. If there is one around you will know. I have five acres fully fenced in 6 foot chain link and I love my hens to be able to "free range" the yard. But now, since I am down to 3 hens and one rooster I am considering just keeping them in the coop 24/7.
    I just can't figure out what is getting them. It is pretty low scrub every where around here and we have Joshua trees. You can spot a hawk on the a mile away, same thing with the owls if they are out early evening. I am also not finding any kill spots in the yard or in the surrounding fields. Chicken are in the coop at dusk and that is when we always notice that somebody is missing. Any thoughts?
     
  2. Ole rooster

    Ole rooster Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,083
    30
    196
    Jun 25, 2011
    Milner, Georgia
    You saying "last night" tells me you don't lock them up at night. If so they wouldn't come up missing. I think that's where I would start. I range mine all day too, but come bedtime they get locked in.
     
  3. aprophet

    aprophet Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,799
    13
    209
    Jan 12, 2010
    chesapeake Va.
    you pit has to sleep this is kina why I favor traps 24/7/365 the national park just south of you probably has fox ,coyote I am not sure if you all have wolves yet [​IMG]
     
  4. LegginMF12

    LegginMF12 Chillin' With My Peeps

    707
    7
    133
    May 2, 2011
    Yucca Valley
    I close up every night. I went out about 8 p.m. to do head count and pet everybody. Both dogs were out at that time and the front door of the house was open. Well o.k. maybe the pug don't exactly qualify, but he's cute! Coop is by the house and the hens and my roo have screamin hissy fits if something as small as a sparrow is in the coop. There was noise noise. Just had 4 hens and a roo at 4ish and 3 hens and a roo at 8.
     
  5. LegginMF12

    LegginMF12 Chillin' With My Peeps

    707
    7
    133
    May 2, 2011
    Yucca Valley
    Quote:That pit has discovered the joys of fresh eggs and is in that coop every 10 minutes if it's open to check the nest boxes. He watches it like a hawk because the squirrels and chipmunks go in there to get the feed. He sleeps in the garage at night but the coop is closed before he comes in.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by