Something's killing chickens, taking heads, leaving bodies

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by cluck cluck here, May 14, 2008.

  1. cluck cluck here

    cluck cluck here Hatching

    May 4, 2008
    Hi there - just wondering if anyone knows of a particular predator that will kill a chicken, take it's head and leave the rest? Not too many feathers laying around. We've lost 2 this way just this week. We are in Northern Illinois. I know there are cats, foxes, coon, owls and possum around for sure, but maybe something else we haven't seen yet. One was a rooster that would never go in, the last was a hen - the coop door got left open. Thanks!
  2. Guitartists

    Guitartists Resistance is futile

    Mar 21, 2008
    That seems odd...seems like it would be the meaty parts that they'd be after. I hope you catch your culprit! Maybe it was something not big enough to get into the coop and could only get ahold of the head... but then again, it seems like the body would get dragged out. I don't know, but I'm sure someone will have a better idea for you.

    I was going to suggest Alice Cooper....... but I realized that this really wasn't one of those laughing matters. :: sigh :: I really need more human interaction... my people skills are getting rusty!
  3. babyboy1_mom

    babyboy1_mom Songster

    Apr 13, 2008
    Weasles will take the head and leave the body. I have had this problem in the past, but thank goodness, not recently.

  4. suenrob

    suenrob Songster

    Jan 22, 2008
    Ft. Myers, FL
    I lost my mama hen and a baby to a Hawk. Found her headless body next to a large hawk feather this morning. [​IMG]
  5. Half-a-dozen

    Half-a-dozen Songster

    May 26, 2007
    Coons!!! we had what looked like the head was just gone and body intact........ [​IMG] Then one day we looked down the neck and OM Gosh..... the entire insides were scooped out clean [​IMG] [​IMG] all from a racoon!!!:mad:

    you would have never known it until you picked up the chicken and looked inside....[​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 14, 2008
  6. DTchickens

    DTchickens Crowing

    Mar 23, 2008
    Bailey, Mississippi.
    weasels will kill chickens. chew their head off and leave. but also heard Coons/Possums will soooo........
  7. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Sounds like a weasal to me. They eat heads. If you find the bird "plucked" it is usually a hawlk. If a coon can reach in and grab a bird, they may pull body parts though wire, but the coons here usually take their kills with them and eat the whole thing. Possums are oppertunists and aparently love to eat innards given the chance.

    I vote weasal. They can go though tiny holes and get into anywhere a rat can.
  8. Acre of Blessings

    Acre of Blessings Canning/Sewing Addict

    Apr 3, 2008
    Axton, VA
    Set up a video cam, if you have one, in your coop and see if you can catch the predator on video. Try to secure all areas that a predator might be able to get into. Hope you figure it out before to many birds get gone.
  9. Bawkadoodledoo

    Bawkadoodledoo Songster

    Jan 4, 2008
    Central MA
  10. eggsgalore

    eggsgalore In the Brooder

    May 4, 2008
    Call a wild life agency, they know all the animals in the area.

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