trying to id predator that killed 3 month old turkey and duck

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by amartinlb, Aug 13, 2010.

  1. amartinlb

    amartinlb Chillin' With My Peeps

    257
    0
    129
    Mar 17, 2009
    Jersey Shore
    The read this first section about kills is missing identifying pics. Two of MY 3 month old birds have been killed. They are starting to try to fly and are getting in trouble. My 3 month old royal palm turkey and 3 month old muscovy duck have been killed within the week. I did not see what happened. I have about 40 mixed chickens, 6 ducks and 7 turkeys that roam together in a fenced in area, all go into coop at night. We did see a giant hawk in the yard one day. I think the royal palm flew out and possibly was killed and stalked outside pen. We live in a pretty urban neighborhood. I found a pile or white feathers and the carcass under/near a neighbors hedge w houses away. No head, breast side up completely cleaned out. Only knew it was a turkey because ours was missing and the feathers.. Yesterday night when ducks went in for night noticed female was missing and began to search. Since she started to fly thought she was in tree. This morning found small pile of feathers on other side of wood stock fence, 20 feet away more feathers, foot away dead duck. It was breast side up - no head, chest and innards missing, picked clean, all back and wing feathers intact. When I went to trim all flight feathers on other ducks found one with what appeared to be a large two inch bite area out of wings right where I would trim - looks like it got away from something. A llttle mess near the pin parts but okay - almost like something got the wing and she struggled away - she is fine. We confined the turkeys, they were being pains rounding up at night trying to sleep outside. In run all have access to coop with covered run area - seems to be they flew out and then were killed but it is possible they were scooped up. In my urban area there are red tail hawks, dogs, racoons, possible opposums,feral cats, skunks. No chickens, eggs, or banty hens missing. Nothing happening inside coop or run at this time. What do you think?
     
  2. zazouse

    zazouse Overrun With Chickens

    11,008
    610
    378
    Sep 7, 2009
    Southeast texas
    Sounds like the works of a hawk, when their prey is to heavy to carry off they will drag it under some kind of brushy cover and proceed to eat it, if it has just hap pend you could leave the carcass and see if it comes back, i have witnessed may hawks with pray and this is what i think you have doing the killing.

    Also you can have more than one critter getting your birds sometimes, but thinking you have only one.

    This can be confusing when trying to figure out what is taking your birds by seeing what is left behind finding two different type of kills.

    I lost a young roo to an owl the last week,i knew what had taken it when i could not find a trail, next day i found a pile of blue-gray feathers not 20 feet from the owl kill they were not from my birds, they farther into the woods also.

    This time i was able to see a feather trail, so i called the dogs we followed the trail and spooked something pretty good size, i got to looking around and found feathers on the side of a tree about 18 inched high, the dogs had stopped at the creek and i could see where something had ran threw it, i figured it to be the wolf that lives here,because a cat would have jumped the narrow creek.

    I still do not know what kind of bird was killed, the feathers were like those of a silky and blue-gray and i do not have any birds like this.

    Sorry to ramble on just sharing some things i have learned about wildlife threw the years on my farm.
     
  3. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

    6,771
    131
    281
    Apr 15, 2009
    That's classic hawk work.

    I found a kill site last year where one of my ducks had been yanked through an electric mesh fence. I initially thought it was a raccoon because the kill was similar to their MO, but the way the feathers were piled so neatly next to the carcass made me think perhaps it was something else. Turns out it was a red-tailed hawk. It came back several times after.

    Sorry for your losses. Put the birds in lock down for a week or two because they are on the menu.

    Good luck.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by