Should I call animal control first? Is it a dog or raccoon?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Gallusfarm, Sep 1, 2009.

  1. Gallusfarm

    Gallusfarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 14, 2009
    Need advice.

    We had a raid on our chickens this weekend and it's most likely racoons. Last night we set some live traps and caught a baby racoon. Surely the mom and dad will be back for more.

    So when I asked my dad for advice, he says we should call the game warden or animal control first, before we set any other type of traps. He's worried it might be dogs, even though we caught this baby racoon. The only suspicion that it might be dogs is that we buried one chicken carcass (that had been beheaded) we found and something dug it up and took it away the other night. The tracks do not look like racoon tracks, but maybe a smaller size dog.

    Should I even bother calling animal control? What can or will they do? I think it's pointless.
  2. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

    Feb 11, 2008
    Waterloo, Nebraska
    It is common for a raccoon to rip the head off. The carcass could have been dug up by a dog, raccoon or a host of other other things. Typically, dogs will not kill just one. They usually massacre.
  3. Dragonfly Ranch

    Dragonfly Ranch Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 13, 2009
    Happy Valley, CA
    Quote:Google for animal tracks and may be you can identify through that. May be a fox? Sorry that you lost some of your chickens. I would just take care of the problem myself unless it is illegal in your area. My understanding is that if they are harming your live stock you can shot them, even dogs. In our county we only need to get a permit for bears and Fish & Game is pretty easy going on that.

  4. Gallusfarm

    Gallusfarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 14, 2009
    Thanks for the help! The tracks look like a fox more than anything. Do you think it's possible it would dig up the body - and the raccoon would dig also? Maybe we have two predators. What a mess. They only come at night - so far.
  5. Dragonfly Ranch

    Dragonfly Ranch Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 13, 2009
    Happy Valley, CA
    Quote:Yes, a fox, coyote or raccoon will dig up. Our rule of thumb is a least 3-4 down when we bury any animal. With the exception of raccoon they are tossed over the edge of canyon and let the blizzards have them.

  6. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 2, 2008
    South Central KY
    Sounds like maybe you have (a) predators, most likely raccoons, especially since you've already caught one,
    and (b)scavengers, which may or may not be actively trying to catch your chickens, and could be a dog, coyote, or something else.

    What ever dug up the carcass may not have anything to do with the initial attack. If a dog dug up the carcass, it doesn't mean you don't have raccoons. And it doesn't mean the dog is a culprit in killing your birds. It just means the dog smelled something funky, that dogs like, and dug it up.

    Say you set live traps, and you catch a dog. If it's got a collar and tag, you can contact the owners, if you choose, or call animal control. Some advocate shoot, shovel, and shut up. I'm not one to advocate such actions. But if you know for sure that individual dog is a problem, and have reason to believe the owner will not be responsible and control it in the future.....everybody has to make their own choices about these things.

    If you catch a raccoon, you can shoot it or call animal control, or maybe Fish & Game. I would not use a leg hold trap, or anything that would kill or injure an animal, because of the strong possibility of catching a non-target and non-threatening animal. Like your own pets, or a neighbors cat, or something.

    Were your birds in their coop when they were attacked? Raccoons typically strike at night, I've never had trouble from them in the daytime.

    Coyotes usually strike at night, as well, but I don't know if they might attack in the daytime. I have a lot around here, I hear them at night all the time, but so far, never had any trouble from them.

    Foxes, I've only had trouble with in the daytime, but that may be because my birds are locked up at night, except a few guineas that used to roost on the roof or up in trees, either way, a fox wouldn't have been able to reach them there. They're finally all going in at night now, so I just have to make sure predators can't get into the coop.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2009
  7. mikeksfarmer

    mikeksfarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 16, 2008
    Bonner springs KS
    Yup its raccoons. I caught two cubs at once this summer. Mother kept comming back trying to free them so I shot her from the window. If you use the cubs in the trap to lure her you need to first secure the door. Youngens can squeeze out easy. This summer I took care of three mothers and most of the cubs and at least 4 adult males. My Turkey vultures were eating pretty regular for a while. Good luck and keep traping.

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