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Thoughts on what got to one chicken?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by kris13, Nov 4, 2016.

  1. kris13

    kris13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 10, 2016
    So we have been letting our chickens range free during the day. They spend most of it under one of two big pine trees. Have had no signs of any predators. Came home tonight, the sun was setting but still light out / no later than we've gotten home before. Saw a few of them (had :( seven) bopping around the yard when I pulled in, thought nothing of it, they usually come over to see if they'll get treats. Told our girls, as we do every evening, to go check for eggs as ours tend to lay under the tree versus the nesting boxes. A few minutes later, one is sobbing that Midnight (the easter egger) is dead.

    When my husband got home later, he went out to inspect, and the head was pretty much gone, insides ripped open / all mangled. The odd part, to him, was she was under one of the big pine trees. So he doesn't think it was a hawk, but not sure why whatever the hell it was didn't attack/get to any of the others. And of course, I feel bad, as we stopped on an errand on the way home, but as mentioned, we got home no later than we normally do (last night was half an hour later than tonight, and they were fine) We're a little afraid now to let them free range as we thought being in/under the huge pine tree was a safe place.
     
  2. birdwrangler057

    birdwrangler057 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 19, 2016
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    I would say it was a raccoon, they mostly kill for sport and tend to rip the guts out. Was the whole chicken left or were parts taken because possums always take a small piece. Also don't start living in fear, you should still allow them to free range, try setting some traps.
     
  3. kris13

    kris13 Out Of The Brooder

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    Especially with the time change, just worried how dark it's going to be before we get home. Would a raccoon just go for one? Ours usually are all together, esp. when under the tree. Maybe wouldn't have mattered, but the 15-20 minutes on the errand will bug me. Poor girl.
     
  4. birdwrangler057

    birdwrangler057 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am assuming the hen was slaughtered outside of the coop so this animal will come back for more if free ranging, keep them up for a few days. If you catch the animal, release it about 15 miles from you house because raccoons and possums are territorial and will return. I hate these animals [​IMG]
     
  5. birdwrangler057

    birdwrangler057 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    installing solar motion activated lights or placing ammonia saturated rags around your coop will also deter animals. [​IMG]
     
  6. birdwrangler057

    birdwrangler057 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    avoid leaving scraps and food out in the yard because raccoons a attracted to these and will move to bigger game after they are finished
     
  7. kris13

    kris13 Out Of The Brooder

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    The pine trees aren't that close to the coop. Will do that though for sure to deter now that something's finally figured out there are chickens. Just with the sun still up/ was light, thought coons are strictly once dark? Guess not. Hope doesn't give the kiddos nightmares.
     
  8. birdwrangler057

    birdwrangler057 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't know if you live in a rural area or not, but I suggest getting a 22. and offing the animal if caught. unless it is a hawk
     
  9. birdwrangler057

    birdwrangler057 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, raccoons and possums will come out at day if food is available
     
  10. birdwrangler057

    birdwrangler057 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I know how it feels to loose a hen, my girl was broody and refused to leave the nest when a rat snake came for the eggs, she ended up being constricted and receiving a wet head for not evacuating. Sad
     

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