I am looking for opinions. In the last 3 months, I have lost 19 hens and I have no clue how. I thought it was a fox because I have seen a fox near the coop but now I'm not so sure. My coop is in an area that is wooded behind it but open into our yard in the front. The woods themselves aren't more than 25' deep and behind that is a chain-link fence that borders a school yard. Out of the 19 hens that have disappeared, they have all gone in batches - this week it was 4 at once. One time, it was 3, once it was 5, once two.....it's never just one a night. In the evening we do let the chickens out into the yard inside an area that has 4' high wooden snow fencing so they can forage for bugs in the grass. I thought this was when they were disappearing so we stopped doing that temporarily and yet a couple still disappeared. Their run is pretty secure - nothing can dig under and get in as we're on bedrock and I dug down to that (anywhere from 3" to 8" and placed hardware cloth in the ground. My coop is very very secure so I know nothing is getting inside and getting the coop......unless it's a human. Not once when the chickens have disappeared has there been even so much as a feather. I spent an hour walking in the "woods" today looking for any trace of the chickens - like where there is a small gap under the school fence, along the river edge (we live next to a ravine basically - school one side, ravine another), etc. and no where, not in one single spot outside of the run or fenced in grassy area, did I find a single feather. Now, in the woods there is this low pine crap that everything gets stuck to so if a chicken were to be dragged off, there is a high probability that at least one or two feathers got stuck to something - but there is nothing. These things have disappeared without so much as a trace. Inside the fenced area, there is a feather here or a feather there but they look normal like the usual hen who was mounted losing a feather or two roosters chasing each other, etc. Nothing, and I mean nothing, indicates any sort of foul play in any area I checked today - and I went quite a distance looking for evidence and couldn't find anything. I'm seriously wondering if someone is coming in and stealing a couple of chickens here and there. The only ones who have gone missing are laying hens - and one pre-laying hen. I have 4 roosters and not one of those has ever disappeared (as much as I wish one would). Has anyone ever heard of someone stealing chickens here and there or would it be more of a "come and steal them all" kind of thing? I know a woman about 30 minutes from here had 3/4 of her flock stolen a couple of years ago in the middle of the night so it does happen......I don't know if I'm just crazy thinking it's a human or I have an excellent predator who leaves no traces..... What do you think?