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Predetor or stolen chicks?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by angussss10, Dec 2, 2014.

  1. angussss10

    angussss10 New Egg

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    Dec 2, 2014
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    Hi There,
    I came to this forum because I am really struggling to figure out what happened to my 40 white rock 6 day old chicks. I have a coop in the upstairs of my barn, well secured (just raised / finished 40 without any losses to predators) Saturday at 6:30pm I went out to top up water / feed and check on the gang, all was good. Went back Sunday before noon and my entire flock of 40 birds are gone. Naturally my 1st thought was something (predator) got in, however there is absolutely NO sign of struggle, scattering, or anything. I assume if something got in there, I would find some form or evidence? I've done some reading before I posted and see that Rats will take the chicks vs other predators would eat there and leave evidence possibly. Again, the shavings aren't scattered, there isn't any fluff or any left overs. Would a rat / squirrel / weasel take all 40 chicks?
    People know we have the chicks because as mentioned I just did a round of 40, and you can see the glow of the heat lamps in the barn windows so I am not ruling out that someone may have helped themselves to my birds as well. Yes stranger things have happened and there are still chicken thieves out there. I did notice a couple of red squirrels outside the barn this morning so is this my answer? I didn't know until researching this morning that they would eat baby chicks, but again, would they really take all 40 without a sign of evidence?

    Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks
    Aaron
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2014
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    There are a few predators that will take chicks without leaving any evidence. Snakes for one but a snake is not going to eat 40 chicks at a time. That’s just too many. A canine like fox or coyote will often take them without a lot of evidence but they’d have to break in and would likely leave some evidence.

    From what you said, it is almost certainly human.
     
  3. angussss10

    angussss10 New Egg

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    Dec 2, 2014
    Ontario, Canada
    That is my gut feeling. I have gone through the coop 3 times now for any kind of sign of a kill but there is nothing. There are many squirrels around because our farm has lots of bush around but I just cannot see all 40 going in one night.
     
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    It seems that a predator of any sort would have left some evidence - some blood, damaged enclosure, scattered shavings ---------- Sadly, I also conclude a high probability of theft,
     
  5. Percheron chick

    Percheron chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sounds like a 2 legged predator.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    That just really stinks!!!

    Time for a padlock and stealth cam.

    Look on craigslist, or other local advertsing, see if anyone is selling chicks.
     

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