R.I.P. Pearl

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by NickyPick, Feb 25, 2012.

  1. NickyPick

    NickyPick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 18, 2010
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    I lost Pearl today. Found her in the back of the horse pen, sans head, body in a pile of feathers. Topaz, Roberta & Garnet were huddled against the far fence and it took some effort to get them to go past Pearl's body back towards the coop. The rest of the flock were already inside. This is a raccoon kill, right?
    The one thing I'm wondering is today, the horses got moved to another pen to decimate some rye grass before some new mini boarders arrive. Could the absence of the horses have allowed the predator to come in the pen and attack? We've gone a year with nothing, but the chickens always have the horses around. Or is it just a coincidence that this happened when the horses were away?

    Pearl:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. un-named543

    un-named543 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 17, 2012
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    awww...so sorry. Pretty bird too.
     
  3. Mzyla

    Mzyla Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Such a pretty bird! So sorry for your loss!
    I do think so - horses was scaring the predators.
    Although they not actually "guard", but at the least was making predators to think twice....
     
  4. NickyPick

    NickyPick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No one has been wanting to leave the run lately. I'm still wondering what it was that got Pearl.
     
  5. NickyPick

    NickyPick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's been over a week and the chickens still won't leave the run for more than 5 minutes before they all run straight back in, through the coop and into their "indoor run" (horse stall). How long until they're able to range again?

    Also, I had been thinking raccoon, since just her head was taken, but my nephew says it may have been a hawk. Do hawks just take heads too?
     
  6. Kiki A

    Kiki A Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not sure about the hawk, but i just lost my barred rock, Salt, to a raccoon. My parents heard him take her. He would have gotten the other five to if they didn't come.
     
  7. Kiki A

    Kiki A Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 9, 2012
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    I'm really sorry about Pearl.:hugs
     
  8. Capvin

    Capvin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Really pretty chickens and I am sorry for what happened. For the most part, predators like fox, coyote, raccoons, bobcat and the like are generally NOT scarred off by horses, but I guess it could be possible. Doubt very much that the attack came from the air but as to who was the predator, the list is long and I think your chickens instints are correct in staying in their protected run. I would keep them there for a while longer because whatever did the damage will be back to do more soon. Sorry, but it is one the hazards that you have to accept if you free range your chickens.
     
  9. NickyPick

    NickyPick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Today I got the orange construction fencing and blocked off a part of the barn so that they can go from their own stall (coop is located behind the stall, so we just put the door in the stall - makes for a very weather protected entrance) and into another across the aisle. I've sprained both ankles coming off a step, so I figure that while I'm incapacitated and they're being fearful, I can get them to help me with the stall picking inside. [​IMG]

    My nephew is all hot for me to get a live trap to catch any raccoons that are around. Not sure what he wants to do with them, tho.
     
  10. barlracer

    barlracer Out Of The Brooder

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    May 28, 2010
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    Hi. Sorry for your loss. Could be racoon, could be possum, but also, owls. have had issues with owls before, and always they only eat head and neck, bones and all. Total lock up at night in a very secure coop will prevent all of these. If taken in the day, hawk is most likely cause, and unfortunately, only prevention there is covered run to the coop, no more free ranging, or sad to say, eliminate the hawk
     

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