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Lone survivor :(

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by sfchicks, Mar 6, 2017.

  1. sfchicks

    sfchicks Out Of The Brooder

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    May 26, 2013
    San Francisco, Ca
    Hi everyone! I lost all my hens but one brave girl. She is getting stitched up now. I'm asking for advice on what to do next? The raccoons are relentless, managed to unlock the coop. I purchased some chicken diapers so she can be inside a bit. Her new home will be the garage.

    Should I dare get her a friend? My 4 polish crested were ripped apart last night and I am really scared to lose anymore. Can she be a happy lone hen? She is already 4 years old.

    Any thoughts would help!

    Thank you!
     
  2. Zoomie

    Zoomie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 6, 2015
    Mora, NM USA
    I guess I would keep trying to secure the coop. Yes, coons have "hands" and in addition are really strong. Maybe put something in the coop like an opened can of cat food or tuna fish or marshmallows (count them) and keep trying your best to secure. If the bait keeps disappearing you know you are not successful. You would need to check laws in your area, but the other thing that I, personally, would do is put a trap inside the coop. And, not a live trap, if you get my meaning. Trouble is, it's probably more than one. Still I would do it if it were legal and so on and so forth. At the very least, get a snap clip or other type clip for the closure - something more secure.

    She's probably going to be OK alone for a while, and if she's getting stitched up, she can't live with other chickens right now anyway as they would probably harass her to death, picking at her scabs and so on. So she'd need to be alone anyway, until she is healed up and healthy. If it were me I'd keep her alone for a while maybe in a great big dog crate, inside the garage, until she is healed and until you have been able to secure your coop and know FOR SURE that the raccoons can't get in anymore. Once that happens then you can think about getting another chicken as a pet for her.

    I'm really sorry you've been having this trouble... much sympathy. I have lost SO many birds to raccoons. They are absolutely the worst, next to dogs, in my experience. I hope you can solve the problem and get your coop secure.

    ETA: spellingggy errer!!
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2017
  3. sfchicks

    sfchicks Out Of The Brooder

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    May 26, 2013
    San Francisco, Ca
    Thanks Zoomie. My neighbor just told me that will be setting traps bc they have been coming into his yard a lot lately. Little late for my girls :( I'm mildly certain I'll keep her inside almost all of the time. I just don't want her quality of life unhappy without a friend!
     
  4. Anne4596

    Anne4596 Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 27, 2016
    Western Nevada
    I agree with Zoomie, your chicken can and has to live alone until her wound heals. However, she can not spend the rest of her life alone. However much you are there for her, this will not suffice for the companionship of her own kind. She will simply be much happier with a buddy. After her wound heals. I would recommend getting her a friend. Also, keep in mind that chickens need to spend most of their time outdoors in order to maintain a healthy and happy life. Please do not keep her inside the rest of her life. For predator proofing your coop, I would highly recommend chain link dog kennel panels. Although they can be expensive, they are highly predator proof. You don't have to kill the raccoons in order to get rid of them, you just need to make your coop raccoon proof. Even if you manage to kill a few raccoons, more will probably come. I have also heard of some people using coyote or wolf pee as a deterrent. Make sure to either bury wire under the soil or form a skirt of wire, to prevent digging predators. Also ensure that you have a sturdy roof, one that raccoons can not get into. I strongly recommend galvanized steel as a roof for you run. It not only keeps out predators, it also protects your girls from the rain. If you bait the coop after predator proofing, and the raccoons continue failing to get in, then it is safe for you to keep chickens in your coop again. I am terribly sorry for your loss and I hope your luck improves. Good luck!
     
  5. sfchicks

    sfchicks Out Of The Brooder

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    May 26, 2013
    San Francisco, Ca
    Hi Anne! Thank you for your input! I really don't want to keep her in and want a friend for her when she is all healed :) The vet recommended the same thing. She said middle of the day is safe for her to be outside. I could never kill a raccoon! I know they kind of suck, but even with that, couldn't do it.
     
  6. Anne4596

    Anne4596 Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 27, 2016
    Western Nevada

    Your welcome! I could never kill a raccoon either. Even though they are annoying, I guess that they are just trying to make a living, just like all of us.
     
  7. sfchicks

    sfchicks Out Of The Brooder

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    May 26, 2013
    San Francisco, Ca
    [​IMG]

    Louise in on the mend and happily enjoying the sun supervised. We have set a raccoon trap however, the darn thing has knocked it over and managed to eat the cat food inside without catching it. Entertaining. We have had a few offers of aging hens who were given away which in about a month we can adopt once her stitches are out and feathers can protect her wounds. Thank you for responding! I personally do not know a single person with chickens so this site really helps :)
     
  8. Zoomie

    Zoomie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 6, 2015
    Mora, NM USA
    That is great news - really glad to hear she's on the mend and she looks very happy there in the sunshine. And that's great that she'll have prospective roommates once she heals up completely.

    Raccoons are really smart and really difficult to catch... however some on this site are pretty good trappers. I've trapped quite a few, but I was not using a catch-and-release type trap. I know those can be tricky... Also, it might be more than one, could even be a whole family! I've seen that too.

    So glad to hear your hen is doing well, and I'll keep hoping you catch the culprit/s very soon.
     

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