Lost a duck. Think it's a weasel or mink? Help Identifying Please!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Funsizeracing, Dec 14, 2011.

  1. Funsizeracing

    Funsizeracing Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 10, 2011
    So we lost our first duck [​IMG] Not sure what it was so I'm asking for help from you guys. I had two ducks (a pekin and a mix around 9lbs) living in my fenced backyard. I live in a subdivision in town. The fence is 4ft chain link all the way around. I have chickens in an enclosure and the ducks just hang out in the yard. The chickens have been there about two years. The ducks for about 8 months with no problems. Predators I have seen in the area are: Coyote, dog, cat, raccoon, opossum, and owl. The neighboring dogs could care less about the ducks and couldn't get to the attack site without being let in the fence. The only cat that comes into the yard quit coming in after being chased by my drake and resorted to hanging out front. I haven't seen signs of raccoon. I accidentally left the trash out a couple of nights prior and it wasn't disturbed at all and raccoons love trash!
    Here's what we found. My mix drake was missing his head and neck. The rest of the body was pretty much undisturbed. One area near the pool where we think the attack started had a few feathers pulled out. About three feet from there was a small pool of blood. Maybe a tablespoon or two. Then about six feet from there we found the body. It had been dragged under the steps of my deck and there was no blood around it at all. We searched the yard and the neighbors searched theirs and we haven't found any other signs of attack or the head/neck. If the head was around I think one of our dogs would have found it by now.
    O, I'm located in Mid-Missouri. We also have fox, hawk, mink, weasel, bobcat, mountain lion and an occasional black bear (not that I've ever seen one) and some others I'm sure I forgot.

    Anyone have experience with this kind of kill know what it was?

    We are looking into game cameras and live traps. Until we can build a secure enclosure in the yard, we've turned the enclosed back porch into a waterfowl aviary [​IMG]
     
  2. Debbi

    Debbi Overrun With Chickens

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    May 2, 2010
    Missouri
    Sorry for your loss! [​IMG] Sounds like either a coon or weasel, they usually go for the head/neck area first. May have been an owl too. That 4' chain link won't keep out any of the predators you listed. I live in mid-MO too, and also have all of the above. Coons climb well, coyotes and dogs will jump that fence with no effort, skunks, possums and coons will dig under. You may want to consider a duck house that you can lock them in at night? Or at least a covered pen with some sort of shelter, with 1/2" hardware cloth around the bottom at least 2' tall. Chciken wire doesn't work, so save your money there. Good luck, please know, whatever it was will be back for more! Can you set a live trap??
     
  3. stormylady

    stormylady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 27, 2008
    Illinois
    Sounds like it may have been a raccoon, seems like they kill for sport mostly! I lost 13 birds to them last year and only a couple were actually used for food, and all were missing alittle bit of breast meat, head and neck. I really liked Raccoons before I got chickens! But Now....[​IMG]
     
  4. RHRanch

    RHRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

    most likely racoon - all that dragging around the duck is more work than i think the weasel would find efficient
     

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