Something killed all my chickens!!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by starrdice, Dec 21, 2012.

  1. starrdice

    starrdice Out Of The Brooder

    So this morning I went out to check on the chickens, and they are all dead!!!!
    Two chicks are missing and one was half drug through the wire at the back of the cage.
    All the adults have bite marks on their heads but no where else! All the eggs were eaten and some shells remained.
    Feathers are everywhere, I looked and could not find any holes in but it did snow a tonne.
    The only thing I found is by the chick that was drug through the cage is long poop littered through out the snow.


    What kind of animal does this?? Also the pen has wire all the way to the ground and out and is covered by logs and rocks.
     
  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    Could it be weasels? They can get through fencing unless it is 1/2 inch hardware cloth. Rats can too. I don't know which predator it was, but I am so sorry for your losses. It must have been quite a shock.
     
  3. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

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    I'm so sorry, I bet loosing them all is awful :( It could've been a weasel (or mink- if you have them in your area). I have both, unfortunately, and have lost a few birds to them. The birds I've lost have always been "special" (gimpy leg, frizzle that can't fly, blind- for some reason or another they couldn't roost). All of the birds I've lost to them have had bite marks on their head and/or necks and they've looked flat, like something squished them or something. Maybe it could be rats, too. I'd use google and figure out what type of tunneling critters live around you. Good luck.
     
  4. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

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    What kind of predators do you have there? Marten? Fisher? Mink? It sounds like it would be something like that from how you described it. Sorry about your loss.
     
  5. jrottie

    jrottie Out Of The Brooder

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    That is weird and I am sorry for your loss! I say weird, because my neighbor called me tonight all shook up, because the same thing happened to them last night. They lost 43 hens. It was a new coop 16ft x 20ft. Wood floor and sides. They have a 12" screen section that goes all around the 4 sides of the coop and is made of standard poultry wire, that is totally intact. They gathered eggs at 4pm yesterday, and the girls were fine. He locked the coop door at 7pm for the night. This morning he went out and opened the door and found 43 dead headless hens, and 6 roosting in the rafters. They shoveled out the coop to check for holes in the wood floor, but after going over the entire coop found none. No holes in any of the walls.The strange thing was no blood anywhere. We live in SW Ohio. I have seen in my lifetime, Minks, weasels, coons, skunks, foxes, and coyotes kill Chickens, but never a massacre of this scale in one night. I locked my coop down tight tonight.With blizzard like conditions here the past 2 days, I figured anything in the wild would be under shelter from this grueling wind and snow. If anybody has any ideas what could do this so swiftly, I'd like to know as well.
    I really am sorry about your loss. I am real attached to my 41 feathered pets.If I lost them it would be a really hard thing to deal with.
     
  6. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/657442/can-weasels-get-through-welded-wire
    see post #6- even though that thread is about welded wire, not chicken wire it mentions how tiny the weasel skull is, to fit through a hole
     
  7. tellynpeep

    tellynpeep Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A small weasel can certainly get through 1" chicken wire, and a large one (fisher) will bite its way through. I'd use hardware cloth, and close them up at night!
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Weasel got in my coop this morning.:..did the SAME exact same. Except some chickens remained, but they ran away in fear.
     
  9. patvetzal

    patvetzal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Chicken (poultry) wire is designed to withstand CHICKENS, not four footed critters.[​IMG]
     
  10. Sadly :/
     

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