Stray cats and my bantams

spudchild

Songster
12 Years
Jul 11, 2007
104
1
131
Nashville
Winter was pretty harsh for our little bantam family. We lot one to a hawk, and 3 to a stray cat. Two of the three were our favorite little hen and her only son. They were both so sweet, me and DH were both very upset about it. Sense that time, we've kept our feathered friends cooped, as it seems free-ranging is too dangerous for now.

We have been trying to come up with a few ideas. First, we tried to live trap to take this stray to the shelter. No success. DH took other measures that I don't really want to discuss to make sure the stray wouldn't be around anymore (I'm an all around animal lover, so I was not really comfortable with this, but we can't keep losing our pets to a stray). We are not sure if it is gone or not.

So...here is the latest thought. Has anyone had any success using larger chickens to guard bantams? All of our birds are BBRed OEBG's, and I have Golden Seabrights in the incubator. The other people in my area all have RIR and Jersey Giants....and no predator problems. If I can get by OEGB Hens to brood on Jersey Giant eggs, do you think that they might grow up to successfully be Guard Chickens for the little ones, or will it be every chick for him/herself if the cat comes back?

Any other suggestions?
 

chickbea

Songster
13 Years
Jan 18, 2007
2,181
16
201
Vermont
Well, when mixing standard breeds with banties you may have a problem with the big girls beating up on the little ones.
An aggressive roo should be able to deter a cat...
...or maybe a goose - I know I'm afraid of geese!
 

LynneP

Songster
11 Years
Mar 21, 2008
4,746
57
231
Centre Rawdon, Nova Scotia, Canada
I know this sounds counter-intuitive, but we're bringing chickens to the property May16, with 25 ferals using the barn in which the coop is located. We have no mice or rats, naturally. I was told many years ago that fed cats are safer around birds, though we're getting bigger breed brown layers and we will not be free-ranging ours. It's virtually impossible to eliminate all ferals in a district even if you want to, but if you have a way to create a cat-proof run, the feral(s) will eliminate your rodents should you have any. I know this is a tough situation. Some pics and ideas on my site below, with a page on Rodent Control.

I wish you well...
 
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spudchild

Songster
12 Years
Jul 11, 2007
104
1
131
Nashville
Thanks for the input. I think I'm going to give it a try. I ordered some Jersey Giant hatching eggs, which I should get tomorrow. I just hope that we don't lose another one. If so, maybe we will get some Geese or Turkeys. I've never raised any birds other than the bantams. What do Geese and Turkeys need for shelter, etc...?
 

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