Only the head left

akstoller

Hatching
11 Years
Oct 3, 2008
2
0
7
Does anyone know which predator would bite off the head and leave not one other part behind? I found one of our 2 and 1/2 month old chick's head only - bitten clean off at the neck. They are fenced in but something could get over the top. At night they are in the hen house; but we have left the door open ... won't do that again. Didn't have any problem before last night.
 

dangerouschicken

Will Barter For Coffee
12 Years
May 6, 2007
2,407
41
213
Columbia Gorge, OR
Skunks or raccoons, probably. So sorry to hear about this


I will still say welcome to the board, even though the circumstances for your finding us are not the best for you right now. I hope you are able to rebuild your losses and enjoy this place when it is not such a sad time.
 

Ugly Cowboy

Songster
11 Years
Apr 25, 2008
1,086
4
171
Corn, OK
Coons. Get you a trap and a .22, bait the trap with a fish or peanut butter, wichever is handiest at the moment, wait til mornin, shoot the coon between the eyes, skin him (save the hide, especially if ya have a boy who wants to be Daniel Boone!) and dress the coon, then bake him with sweet potatoes and eat him.

Oh, ya said ya found the head only. I thought ya said only the head was et, that would rule out coons.
 
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mikeksfarmer

Songster
11 Years
Sep 16, 2008
613
5
141
Bonner springs KS
I know the Answer; Great Horrned Owl. Put wire over the top of your pen. Owls and some other bird-preditors sever the head and leave it behind to lighten the load of what they are carrying off. I have seen this first hand. Owl beside the road when I stopped it flew off when I investigated further there was a whole cotton tail rabbit with the head neatly removed. Another case found rabbit tracks in the snow with wing feather imprints some blood and one nicely removed rabbit head. Owls are cool animals I really want to encourage you to cover you pen with wire to prevent this. Then you will have an owl that will eat the mice, and other pests that are around and not your chickens. Good luck
 

justusnak

Flock Mistress
12 Years
Feb 28, 2007
6,016
21
286
South Eastern Indiana
I would have to agree with Mikesfarmer. Some sort of bird of prey. Owl, Eagle,Hawk...something of the sort. Definately cover the run..and keep an eye out, it will be back for more.
 

akstoller

Hatching
11 Years
Oct 3, 2008
2
0
7
Thanks all of you for your advice. Last night I locked them in the coop - and they are all there this morning. We are adding hot wire around the fence and will cover the run.

I appreciate you all, A
 

Cetawin

Chicken Beader
11 Years
Mar 20, 2008
13,752
127
333
NW Kentucky
Head off = coon head left = most likely an Owl if it happened during the night.

Make sure that run is covered and their door closed at night.

Good luck with this problem.
 

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