Not a pleasent thing to come home to.

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by puckbunny87, May 8, 2008.

  1. puckbunny87

    puckbunny87 In the Brooder

    Apr 3, 2008
    Norco, CA
    I didn't think I'd have to post twice in this forum in the same day... ugh.

    Boyfriend came home to a dead Light Brahma pullet. The pullet was nearly full-sized, so she was a big bird... I don't know if it could have been a hawk. Basically, breast area was ripped open but the pullet wasn't really eaten too much...any idea what this could be?

    I've only ever seen possums in my yard... but the girls go out in the morning, when it's daylight, so daylight possum? Does that sound plausible.

    Poor girls. My other two are traumatized.
  2. LinckHillPoultry

    LinckHillPoultry Songster

    Jan 17, 2008
    Possums are nocturnal. As are coons, foxes... etc. My guess would be a hawk. Not positive though.
  3. mswiggi

    mswiggi In the Brooder

    Dec 4, 2007
    Are there puncture wounds on the neck?

    Do you have any streams/creeks/rivers/ponds by you?

    I recently had a major mink attack, and the breasts were ripped open, with hardly any meat removed.

    But I really have no idea...sorry
  4. puckbunny87

    puckbunny87 In the Brooder

    Apr 3, 2008
    Norco, CA
    To my knowledge, we don't have any minks/weasels where I live... I'm not 100% positive on that, but I don't think we do.

    I just don't know what could have got her. A dog, maybe... but there's a wood fence all the way around. There's only one small place a dog could have got in...and it would have to be a small dog. I've never seen a loose dog in our neighborhood.

    I'm so frustrated! Poor little Brahma chicken. [​IMG]
  5. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    So sorry for your loss...A hawk will break the bird's neck then proceed to pluck it and take off the head and feet...
    I found this on another site.

    The usual predators of chickens are raccoons, foxes, weasels, and coyote. If you find an explosion of feathers, the culprit was probably a raccoon or fox, although owls and hawks have been known to grab chickens. Raccoons will go after caged animals, pulling a head or feet through the fence and eating them. They are very adept with their paws, and will often drag off a bird and eat all of the meat, leaving an almost intact carcass. If you find dead chickens with wounds around the neck and the crop eaten, the likely culprit is a weasel. Weasels will sometimes try to drag the carcass of the chicken through a small hole. Dogs will kill a chicken and often not eat it. Opossums and skunks rob eggs and will eat chicks. Spreading finely powdered lime around the chicken coop may show up identifiable foot prints, or snake tracks, of the predator.
  6. poultrykeeper08

    poultrykeeper08 Songster

    Feb 12, 2008
    Agawam , Ma
    i woke up one morning to a coyote killing one of my bard rocks and found a dead one a couple feet away an dthe dead one had its breast/crop gone . But i dont know if something else killed that one and he just happen to catch the other one
  7. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    I vote for the possum! We were finding chickens just like that on the roost when I was young. They were killed on the roost, just sitting there with their breasts eaten away. We finally caught the culprit and it was a huge ol' possum. One night we heard the hens and went to look...saw a huge rope-like thing hanging down and thought it was a snake...nope, possum tail. Shoot the possum!
  8. Tom908

    Tom908 In the Brooder

    May 8, 2008
    The solution is simple, buy a low clalibre gun for insurence. Rodent guns and the like.
  9. normajean

    normajean Songster

    Apr 14, 2008
    Howell, MI
    When I had issues with unknown predators killing my animals, I set up different live traps to see who the culprit was...
    I borrowed the traps from the local feed store.
    I ended up catching a raccoon and 2 possums (other than my curious cats!)
    They were humanely disposed of and I haven't had a problem since and it has been 3 years.
    Good luck and sorry to hear about your chickies...
  10. puckbunny87

    puckbunny87 In the Brooder

    Apr 3, 2008
    Norco, CA
    Thanks everyone. I think I will go the live-animal trap route.... I recently caught a whole family of skunks under my office at work w/ one of those traps. Very handy. I think it's an possum... my mom has been seeing them out in the mornings, while it's light outside. This may have happened around 7am when I let them out. and I've seen a possum walk across my patio at night. The girls will have to move until I get whatever it is caught.

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