It'll be Back!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Dean W, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. Dean W

    Dean W Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 8, 2013
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    Last night I lost two of my 2 1/2 month old chicks. Something squeezed it's way into a small opening in the pen and took their bodies out. I really didn't see any signs of feathers except a few right by the opening of the hole (without any signs near by). So I'm not certain if it was a possum, raccoon, skunk, ring tail, or a fox. Anyone have any clues? They were three left in that pen that didn't get eaten.

    It'll be back and hopefully tonight it will find it's self in the trap. I put some cat food in the trap to hopefully lure it.
     
  2. MsChickenMomma

    MsChickenMomma Overrun With Chickens

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    I'm so sorry for your loss! I had two raccoons climb in the window of my coop and they killed two of my hens. They left quite a mess behind, so I don't know if it would be a 'Coon that got yours. Was the opening on the ground? It may have been a possum. I haven't had many experiences with predators, so I'm not exactly the best person to answer. From experience, I don't think it was a raccoon.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
  3. Dean W

    Dean W Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you and I'm sorry about your loss too. Yes, the opening was on the ground. I didn't believe anything could get inside. So that narrows down the list then. The bad thing about was they were two of my favs.
     
  4. MsChickenMomma

    MsChickenMomma Overrun With Chickens

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    It seems like its Murphy's law that your favorite chickens are the ones the predators take... I wish I knew why that was. You could try setting a trap inside the coop by the opening it came through, so when it comes in it goes right into the trap. You can also try baiting the trap with cat food or dog food. I have caught many possums and raccoons using cat food.

    Sadly it takes stuff like this to learn how to protect our chickens. In the spring of 2012 we had 6 'Coons in our barn, and two chickens killed. We got rid of the coons and sealed up all of the spots they were getting into the barn from, and we haven't had a problem since. (KnockOnWood)

    Good luck catching your critter. Sorry you had to go through this... :(
     
  5. Dean W

    Dean W Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 8, 2013
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    Yes, I used cat food last night, but didn't catch a thing.

    We also had a big problem before with raccoons nesting in our barn. We must of had quite a few.
     
  6. MsChickenMomma

    MsChickenMomma Overrun With Chickens

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    Try using eggs. You don't have to crack them or anything. Just put a dish with two or three eggs in the back of the cage. I usually try the eggs if the cat food doesn't work. It may take a few nights to catch it. Five of the raccoons we had last spring were a family of coons. A very large male, a female, and three very young raccoons. It took a long time to get rid of them all. Normally I don't like to have to shoot raccoons, but this family of coons was killing my chickens, so I had no choice. [​IMG]
     
  7. Dean W

    Dean W Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That is true on shooting them. I just found three dead doves in my little flight pen I had built. So I put them in a refrigerator out in the barn for tonight. Those suckers were pricey too so it's a real bummer. Seems they were frightened; one ran into the side of the barn and died the other two were clawed through the wire. Didn't seem to notice any sign of fur on the poultry wire though.

    I'll be taking two more traps out there in a few in case it's several critters doing the killing. Just hope it's not a skunks...[​IMG]
     
  8. MsChickenMomma

    MsChickenMomma Overrun With Chickens

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    Yeah I hope you don't have skunks either. We had two skunks last winter, and they had made a nest down in the cement. We couldn't trap them, or they'd spray, and we couldn't shoot them, because they'd spray. I left them be for about a month. They used to come out every night and eat all of the cat food I had out for my cats. We ended up going through a 36 pound bag of cat food in 5 days, and my dad got fed up and shot it. My barn stunk for about 3 weeks. We never caught the other, but we moved last year in February, and the skunk died in the front yard. We found it one of the times we went back to clean the house. We think a hawk or something got it.

    But the point is, skunks are AWFUL, and very hard to get rid of.
     
  9. ladytoysdream

    ladytoysdream Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We came to the conclusion we have a possum checking out our coop.
    Last night, the paw prints were there and like a wavy line like something
    dragging ( tail ). I thought I saw one about a week ago out back. Definite now.

    Talking to a friend today and she said she is working on getting rid of
    a coon, and a shunk checking out her chickens.
    She suggested using a sardine can in the havaheart trap. You only open
    the can just a little bit so the smell will lure the varmit into it. She also
    mentioned in the past that marshmellows will work in a trap for coons.

    Set a good trap and be patient.
     
  10. Dean W

    Dean W Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You read my mind. We "have a hart" trap. In the past I've used sardines. I do have a can available. Last night I sliced up apples and put that cat food.
     

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