Lost My First Chicken Yesterday

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by WitksChicks, Jun 13, 2011.

  1. WitksChicks

    WitksChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 8, 2009
    Central CT
    I'm so sad. I now know how it feels, and truly feel sympathy for anyone who looses a chicken. I got my first flock only 26 months ago (April 2009) and have been very protective of them and lucky no predator (we've had fox and coyote in our back yard, and we're in a residential neighborhood) attacks until yesterday. How it happened was: I was stepping into the shower, with the knowledge that DH was outside with the chickens, as he had let them out and he knew I was not available for a few minutes. He apparently came in to get something really quick (actually only 30 seconds), when he went back out the door, he saw a fox running into our yard from the neighbors, straight for one of our Black Star hens. Fox caught her tail feathers, and the other 6 hens scattered for cover, while husband was chasing the fox, the chicken instead of running for cover ran to the front of the house, and across the street into our neighbors front yard, where the fox (which had circled around our other neighbor's house) spotted her and attached her again, before we could get to her. She escaped briefly to the neighbor's backyard, where by the time we got to her, the fox had pretty much ended her life. HATE THOSE DARNED FOX. I understand that it's part of the food chain, but it hurts my heart knowing it was human error. DH feels terrible.

    I have 6 of that flock left, which was originally 7. And I had just picked up my new flock of 8 day old chicks, which are currently in a brooder box in my garage - safe.

    I'm now sooooo worried that the fox, who knew the chickens were there but not reachable while safely in their run, now knows they are obtainable, and fear for the remainder of that flock, and my new one once it's moves outside.
     
  2. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Apr 15, 2009
    I am so sorry for your loss. You are right to be worried. That fox will likely be back for more. I think your birds had better stay locked up for a while until the fox loses interest.

    Good luck.
     
  3. WitksChicks

    WitksChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 8, 2009
    Central CT
    Thank you CMV. I'm keeping them in their enclosed run for a while. And my eyes peeled for that fox. I wish I could hav-a-heart trap it and relocate, but I know she has a couple of babies to feed, and it wouldn't be fair to leave them motherless.
     
  4. augustwest

    augustwest Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 24, 2010
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    Very much the same thing happened to us. While free ranging, the fox grabbed a pullet right in front of me. I locked everyone up, but Foxy came back and dug into the run and killed 2 more. We're more secure now. We've seen that fox pacing the run since then.

    It's hard. My chickens love to be loose- truly love it. But, it's a risk and I'm trying to balance that. We've got limited coop space, so we've bulked up in anticipation of another loss. this is fox kitten season, but when that's over it seems there's something else- migrating hawks or something next.

    Sorry for your loss. First one is hard.
     
  5. 1livelychick

    1livelychick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 22, 2010
    So sorry for your loss. How terrible....just know you do the best you can. One of my girls was attacked yesterday..either coyote or fox..We have a coyote problem, so I'm thinking coyote. I am still taking care of her and it will be a long process if she survives. I plan on keeping mine locked up in their run. something tried to get into the run last night and damage the dog kennel fencing. They are in a "hopefully" secure coop. THe predator will be back..you can count on it. Not trying to be negative just my personal experience.
    Sorry again for your loss.[​IMG]
     
  6. WitksChicks

    WitksChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 8, 2009
    Central CT
    Thank you everyone! DH saw the fox this afternoon broad daylight, walking down the middle of the road, three streets away from ours. He said it looks very brazen and that humans don't seem to bother it as he rolled down the car window and tried to scare it out of the street. The darned fox just looked at him and continued to go about it's noontime stroll. I've been keeping my eye on the coop ever since then. No sign of the fox yet!! My girls are secure in their coop/run, which has welded wire all around and 2' below the ground and 1 1/2' out from the coop/run. It's very secure so I'm ok that their safe, as long as they stay in the coop/run. Which isn't fair to them, as they do love to be out free ranging.
     

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