Lost 4 chickens

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by sassygrrl32, Dec 29, 2013.

  1. sassygrrl32

    sassygrrl32 New Egg

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    I'm new here. Last yr we got 10 chicks. Kind of a long story, my husband and I are separated now. He decided to let the chickens free range, I tried to get him to not do this and build a run for them but he thinks they're happier freeranging..
    Anyway, a few months ago he lost 1. Found the head but nothing else. Over christmas while he was at the church where he volunteers(then he went to a friend's) he came back to find 4 chickens gone and a few feathers but nothing else. He lives in the city but chickens and roosters are allowed.
    I'm thinking a fox but am just guessing. This is in NC. The problems occurred when he wasn't there.

    What he's concerned about is the fact that our ex tenants threatened to kill not only us, my new tenant and friends but also threatened to kill our chickens by cutting their heads off and the heads of our dog and cats too. They slashed tires on one vehicle a few wks ago and there was dead baby possum that my husband had been caring for because it's mother was nowhere around right next to the slashed tires(he posted about the possum on FB) Also a neighbor has said she had no problem taking our chickens and wringing their necks and putting them on her dinner table....

    There's never been an issue with the cats being around the chickens or the dog.

    The threats were all reported to police, police are useless in threat cases. I reported them to humane society(they're pretty much useless too, I think everyone thinks cutting animals heads off is a joke or something)...

    My question, if cats were the culprit would they carry the carcusses away? My husband can't find the bodies....Does a fox do the same thing? What about other predators?

    Sorry for it being kind of long. I'm new to chickens.....
     
  2. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Here's a link that describes how certain predators leave their prey's remains and how you can determine what's getting them. Your ex tenant sounds like a lovely individual. However, if it was a human doing a hate-crime, it's a little strange that the bodies aren't there so it's probably a predator, unless your neighbor is eating them.

    http://professorchickenspredators.webs.com/
     
  3. Those threats seem freaky [​IMG] I am glad I don't know those people.. I sure hope you figure this out. Keep us posted, sorry about the losses of your chickens.
     
  4. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Firstly [​IMG]!!! I would say more than likely it was a predator who did this and not your ex tenant. As said above if it was them you would have the bodies there as well. There are a number of predators who could have done this a fox, coyote, raccoon, opossum, skunk among others. Were the chickens taken during the day or at night?
     
  5. sassygrrl32

    sassygrrl32 New Egg

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    Dec 29, 2013
    Hi, thanks for the replies. I talked to my husband a little more to get more info. I didn't ask but I would say day because the chickens are always in their coup at night. Most of the feathers were right on the outside of the fence line(they've taken to wandering a bit). THere were feathers near the coup but he said not very many so he didn't know if from normal loss or something else. The rest were scattered from our house all the way down to a neighbors. He said he didn't see any blood. It sounds to me like whatever it was chased the chickens from our house down to the neighbors where it caught them but there are no bodies. My aunt says dog but would a dog carry all the bodies away?
     
  6. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would say a fox would be more likely than a dog. I don't see a dog killing and carrying off a chicken let alone 4 of them. A fox would do so however.
     
  7. sassygrrl32

    sassygrrl32 New Egg

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    My husband found out from some neighbors that there was a bobcat in the area and in fact the bobcat got hit by a car(we live right off a busy hwy). My understanding is the cat got killed(the neighbors said they picked him up so whether dead or alive I'm still not clear on but if just injured they would have taken him somewhere so he's gone from our area). I didn't even know we had bobcats but I guess we do. My only fear is if there was that bobcat there may be more but my husband insists on freeranging which I told him was a bad idea. PLus he's stuck on the human perspective.

    I'm pretty sure that bobcat was the culprit although I could be wrong but he was spotted and hit by a car on the same day our chickens went missing.
     
  8. Mahlzeit

    Mahlzeit Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I didn't even think about a bobcat, another deadly predator for chickens.
     
  9. sdm111

    sdm111 Overrun With Chickens

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    Not much you can do about predators if you're gonna free range and I wouldn't figure the problem is taken care of with the dead bobcat. May not have been that and if it was prolly not the only one around.
     

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