Under Siege From Predators

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by MVchickens, Feb 10, 2012.

  1. MVchickens

    MVchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 8, 2010
    Martha's Vineyard MA
    Within the last week I have lost four birds. Thats coming off of a six month stretch of no problems. To start the week off I lost a chicken to a hawk. This morning I noticed I was missing two of my ducks from the pond. While searching for any remains of the ducks I found the torn up remains of the local pheasant. I just don't know whats going on. I have never had this problem before, and it seems like multiple predators. Right now everyone is in lock down but that can go on forever. Will the predator activity die off as spring approaches?
     
  2. fc

    fc Out Of The Brooder

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    Do you think it's the hawk for all of those dead birds? I don't think it will get better.
     
  3. chkn

    chkn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 27, 2010
    We've been having hawk problems. Seems I see him coming around every 3-4 days, desperately sometimes. Once he gets a kill, then I don't see him for another 3-4 days. I think he'll come back to finish the kill if he can. Interestingly the neighbor lost two on that day although I think it happened over night because I thought their hens were in. Carnage all over. Now I see foot prints on the other side of my chicken coop, just like last year when we had the foxes stalking us. Coulda been the neighbor's dog but he made the same pause at my coop at the same place. A fox could kill multiple birds. I swear as time goes on there's more carnage. I think those birds were cached and it's a fox problem on top of the hawk problem.
     
  4. DCasper

    DCasper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 13, 2012
    Benton, KY
    Good luck and please keep us posted. I hope it is just a hawk and not multiple predators.
     
  5. Chemguy

    Chemguy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 30, 2011
    Springfield, Ohio
    February and March are hawk-heavy times of the year. Last year's chicks, now adults are starting to pair up and their ranges are smaller for now. Smaller range = higher predation. Once they've found a food source, they'll stick with it. The hawk-related activity should slow down on its own in late March. But, if the pair that 'wins' your land as part of its territory inlcudes the culprit that has been killing your birds, you might have a continued problem.
     
  6. MVchickens

    MVchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 8, 2010
    Martha's Vineyard MA
    Unfortunately I think it is multiple predators. The chicken I know was grabbed by a hawk. The ducks were grabbed at night from the waters edge, so it had to be a raccoon or maybe a muskrat. I have know idea what got the pheasant because it was in a very covered thicket area. I can eliminate foxes and there is very very very low possibility of it being a coyote being as we live on an island and there hasn't been any confirmations of any that have made it over yet. I just don't understand why everything came out at once after such a long period of nothing.
     
  7. zazouse

    zazouse Overrun With Chickens

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    Sounds like a bobcat has entered your duck area . Check for prints along the edge of the pond,especial around brush if there is any.
    Also once a hawk makes a kill and leaves it another critter may come along and finish it off .
     
  8. MVchickens

    MVchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It cant be a bobcat because we don't have them here. Our largest predator is raccoon unless a coyote has made the 7 mile swim.
     
  9. mohillbilly

    mohillbilly Chillin' With My Peeps

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    if a raccoon is your largest predator then set a trap baited with raw chicken you will catch him within a day or 2 plus you might catch any others that are around
     
  10. MVchickens

    MVchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 8, 2010
    Martha's Vineyard MA
    The trap is almost always set. catch them all the time, Problem is they are crafty little guys.
     

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