Rat, Weasel, or beetle?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by keeperofthechickens, Jun 14, 2007.

  1. keeperofthechickens

    keeperofthechickens In the Brooder

    Mar 1, 2007
    Twin Cities, MN
    I am raising chickens and had a two day old chick die of natural causes. I had left it on the ground outside the coop in the chicken wire pen (fully enclosed with roof), kinda like bait to see if any predator could get in the pen.

    So the first day I noticed it had been moved maybe 3 feet. The next day it had been moved another foot and half of it seemed to be in partially in a hole. So I pulled the chick out and the hole, the chick had not been eaten. I could not find any tracks so I started to dig the hole out with a shovel. The hole was not much of a hole at all and the only thing I found was a large beetle.

    So my question is could a large carrion beetle drag a 2 day old chick down a partial hole. Or is a rat or weasel storing the food.


  2. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    I would think a rat or weasel would take it farther, quicker. I wouldnt be suprised by a beetle----they are on other large dead insects so apparently they can be carnivorous. Hmmm, stranger things have happen! See what everyone else says....
  3. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    I'm pretty sure that the Carrion beetle didn't lug the body all that way. He's more likely to lay his eggs in the body after someone else brought it there. I would say a rat.
  4. lacyloo

    lacyloo Cooped Up

    May 26, 2007
    north florida
  5. MTchick

    MTchick Songster

    Feb 2, 2007
    Western Montana
    I'm actually going to say beetle, too. It didn't kill the chick- but once the little chick was dead, the beetle dragged it into the hole to lay eggs on it. The beetle also dug the hole itself. They do this to dead mice and so forth all the time, so a chick should be no different.

    The world is fascinating, isn't it.

  6. keeperofthechickens

    keeperofthechickens In the Brooder

    Mar 1, 2007
    Twin Cities, MN
    I contacted the MN Department of Natural Resources and they thought it was a beetle or a group of beetles that did it.

    I am just glad it wasn't a rat storing food.

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