Puzzled about what killed my chicken

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by geochick1, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. geochick1

    geochick1 New Egg

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    Aug 24, 2013
    western NY
    Yesterday when I came home from work, one of my hens was missing. The girls have a fenced in yard around their coop, but sometimes they fly out. I called and searched the surrounding woods where they like to free range when I let them out, but no luck. This morning, a few of the girls were pecking at something underneath and to the back of the coop. (They have an electric door on the coop so they can let themselves out in the morning (love it!), so they were already out when I went up. The coop is built on a slope and is designed so they can go under it for shade, dust baths, etc.) Imagine my surprise and horror when I discovered it was Rose! Her head and neck were completely skeletalized and her internal organs were gone through a gaping hole in her side, but otherwise she was intact and feathered. Any thoughts?

    Here's a few more general details: We live in a rural area, so there are wild animals around (although I have never actually seen any, probably because we have two dogs and cats--none of which bother the chickens). The chickens were free-ranging the day before, and sometimes they get into my flowers (something toxic?). I also found a piece of insulating styrofoam in the woods that had been pecked extensively. If my chicken died of poisoning, would the other chickens eat her?
     
  2. TOP KNOT

    TOP KNOT Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 10, 2013
    SHERIDAN IL
    An opossum will eat the guts and so will a skunk. A raccoon will take the heads. All will eat eggs.
     
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