Playing the "what stole my chicken game"

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by tjs22, Aug 17, 2016.

  1. tjs22

    tjs22 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2016
    Under unusual circumstances yesterday, I was not able to lock my chickens up until an hour after dark. (They free range) When I did my head count I was a chicken short. In the morning I walked all over the property looking for any clues. Nothing at all. I kept them penned up all day today until an hour before dark. I watched over them for that hour, then locked them up.
    About 20 mins later my dog was going nuts looking at something out the window, I thought it could be the culprit so I let the dog outside to scare it off. He lost it's trail, and didn't even get to chase it, but he did scare it barking must be cause it took off. After he finally came back in he had rolled in scat I'm assuming, and it smelled like fish.
    I have a few suspicions but wondering what everyone else thinks as to who stole my chicken..
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2016
  2. Eggsoteric

    Eggsoteric Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My guess would be fox, coyote, bobcat. There could be a chance that your girl is in hiding and may surface at some point, however, my experience with disappearing chickens has been fox-related (don't have coyotes nor bobcat in my area, yet).
     
  3. tjs22

    tjs22 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2016
    I suspect a fox. There are many in the area. My theory is that it went into the coop after dark and took one chicken. I'm very lucky that it was only one chicken. Getting a trap and hopefully I'll get lucky. I want my girls to be able to free range during the day, I'm worried they'll come up missing now. They are safe at night. That was the FIRST time I couldn't be home on time to lock them up.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Bummer....it only takes once. Now it's best to keep them locked up in the run for a week or so, cause that critter will be back.

    Where are you located? Are you near a creek/stream/river?
    Wonders about the fishy smelling scat....could be any scat not necessarily the chicken killers.
     
  5. tjs22

    tjs22 Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2016
    Confirmed fox. We actually saw it go into the trees with a hen in it's mouth, not even a week after the FIRST disappearing chicken. We will take care of this fox but worried there will be others. Keeping the girls protected in the run with only supervised free ranging time maybe for an hour or so.
     

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