Two of my girls just vanished!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by I have WHAT in my yard?, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. I have WHAT in my yard?

    I have WHAT in my yard? Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 24, 2008
    Eggberg, PA
    This will be night three that they have not come back. The flock was free ranging on Monday in the late afternoon and DH tld me we only got 17 back. But, I had two girls who were dare devils who liked to escape and roost in strange places every now and then. I knew they were living a risky life so I assumed it was them. But, the next day when I looked I realized it was not those two, it was my two buff orpingtons. [​IMG]

    These old girls were skittish and never even wandered far. I have looked high and low, no sign of them, no sign of attack, no feathers nothing. These were pretty big girls. And two of them at once? In daylight? What am I up against?
  2. Bizzybirdy

    Bizzybirdy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 14, 2008
    North of Nashville
    And two of them at once? In daylight? What am I up against?

    Dog maybe. So sorry.​
  3. chris_m90731

    chris_m90731 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 19, 2009
    Los Angeles, CA
    something similar happened to me several years back.
    a mature Rhode Island Red in my care vanished.
    a few feathers scattered here and there, but nothing that rang of racoon/opossom/dog attack -- plus my yard is secured by a large fence.
    well, behind my house is a canyon. took the dog for a walk...and what did i find up in a tree?
    brown/red feathers...and a chicken foot.
    AND a nest that belonged to RED-TAILED HAWK.
    putting two and two together, i surmised the hawk musta swooped down and taken the RIR.
    at least that's my theory and i'm sticking to it...
  4. Miltonchix

    Miltonchix Taking a Break

    Jul 14, 2007
    Milton, Florida
    Fox. They will take your birds one at a time leaving no trace. My ducks all vanished this way.
    Not far from you will be a tunnel entrance "paved" with the missing birds feathers.
  5. I have WHAT in my yard?

    I have WHAT in my yard? Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 24, 2008
    Eggberg, PA
    We DO have red tail hawks but I didn't think they could full out cary one of these girls off! Last time we lost one to a hawk it took her head and then came back to snack.

    Fox seems likely, so I guess no free range for a while [​IMG] Their run is soaked and not drying so I really wanted them to be able to get out.......
  6. Beekissed

    Beekissed Flock Master

    Same thing happened to two of my girls a couple of weeks ago. No trace and no way a four footed predator could reach them, so the verdict is hawk. We had several pairs hunting over us and my roo is not a real vigilant old roo would never have left any of his girls out there for predation.

    This is the first real predation I've experienced since raising chickens all these years. The last time was when I was little and we caught a possum and an owl trying to get the chickens.
  7. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

    Apr 15, 2009
    It is the time of year for hawk attacks, but I am skeptical that a hawk could just snatch and grab an orpington. They are some hefty girls if they were full sized. Is it possible it was a 4-footed predator like a fox, coyote or bobcat? December is when coyotes start packing up for mating season, so they are starting to hunt in groups. That would explain the loss of 2 at once.

    Sorry for your losses.
  8. rhoda_bruce

    rhoda_bruce Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 19, 2009
    Cut Off, LA
    Everyone likes the disposition of the orphingtons, but what makes them so loveable also makes them more vulnerable. I am wondering about the possibility of a 2 legged preditor. I mean, no noticed outburst??? No mess. Just gone?
  9. I have WHAT in my yard?

    I have WHAT in my yard? Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 24, 2008
    Eggberg, PA
    You know Rhoda I wondered the same thing. The reason I keep my disreputable ole roo is that he has fought off hawks before. One of his girls got hurt, but the hawk got the message.

    I cannot imagine who would do it. They were big girls with big fluffy butts! [​IMG]

    I can't imagine one of my neighbors doing it and it is hard to imagine someone else being around......

    I will probably sleep better if I tell myself it was a fox or a hawk.
  10. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

    Feb 11, 2008
    Waterloo, Nebraska
    Is it possible that they went broody and have themselves stashed away some place?

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