Update: HAPPY ENDING! - Friday 13th - One dead, one injured.

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Wolfpacker, Jul 13, 2007.

  1. Wolfpacker

    Wolfpacker Songster

    Jul 7, 2007
    My wife called me at work today. She went out to check our 7 week old Dominiques who stay in a chain link dog kennel with hardware cloth around the perimeter so nothing can dig in and hardware cloth on top so nothing can come from that route.

    I came home and found 5 our our chicks hiding in the egg box. They usually run to you whenever you approach them. The 6th was lying behind the coop dead - not a mark on her body.

    I discoverd that another chick had been severely injured. Her wing was nearly pulled from its socket. I took her to our vet who, God bless her, anesthitized her and stitched her up and gave us some antibiotics. She also examined the dead chicken and couldn't find any reason for it to be dead.

    So what happened?

    The injured one is in the brooder by herself while she recovers. The rest remain outdoors.
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2007
  2. hypnofrogstevie

    hypnofrogstevie chick magnet

    Jul 12, 2007
    Newton NJ
    I hope you find what got to the poor chick
  3. birdlover

    birdlover Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    Wow, gosh...that's a real puzzler!! Well, this is a possibility: A raccoon came nosing around, trying to get into the pen. Raccoons are famous for grabbing a chicken through the wire fencing and doing what happened to your chicken or worse. That could explain her injury. With the other one, maybe she had a heart attack. Chickens do die from heart attacks...like if a dog is chasing them. The others were hiding in the egg box because there was definitely SOME kind of predator around trying to get in! (Excellent job on your fencing, by the way!!!) I read on another site that you should make the corners of your pen solid (with plywood or something) so the chickens have a place to run to that the blasted raccoon can't get his arm through and grab 'em! Sure hope you get to the bottom of it!!

  4. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    I would think a raccoon too. I would also say that the bird was scared to death with the other one being hurt. Sorry for your loss.
  5. pattycake

    pattycake Songster

    May 7, 2007
    fingerlakes, ny
    Do raccoons really come out in daytime? I don't think I've ever seen one in the light. Except dead ones.

    I'm a little nervous because though my chickens are locked up tight at night, they spend the day in a 6-foot high run that has only chicken wire on top. I figured that nothing that would come out in the day would work its way through the chicken wire roof, but if coons are out... :eek:
  6. hypnofrogstevie

    hypnofrogstevie chick magnet

    Jul 12, 2007
    Newton NJ
    If you see them in the daytime make sure you can trap it and shoot it. They are the rabid ones. I caught one in my old hav-a-hart and it was rabid. I had a cop come over and he shot it.
  7. Wolfpacker

    Wolfpacker Songster

    Jul 7, 2007
    My injured girl seems OK. I kept her in the brooder while the effects of the anesthisia wore off. She is eating and drinking. I even gave her a small snail I found and she gobbled it up. Her wing is hanging down limp and she looks a bit roughed up, but otherwise she seems alert and OK. The vet said her nerves and muscles were exposed and she might have some permanent damage to that wing.

    I had her on the back deck in the brooder until dusk. Her sisters all went into their house and I shut them up. I came back and found her pacing and peeping, so I took her out and put her in with the rest. They all immediately lay down together.

    I didn't realize a chick could literally be frightened to death but I suppose it's possible. And the vet, my wife, and I also hypothesized that something must have reached through and grabbed her. I thought it might have been a cat who crept up on them.

    I'll give you an update in the morning.
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2007
  8. tiffanyh

    tiffanyh Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    FYI--not all racoons out in the day are rabid. If they have babies or if they are hungry, they will search during the day. Just dont want you to worry if you see one in the day here or there. If they got at your chicks in the day, it was most likely out because it was short on food.

    I hope your chick does well, mine are in the same kind of set up and I probably have a false sense of security since I lock them in at night!
  9. suburbanchick

    suburbanchick Songster

    Apr 7, 2007
    Raleigh NC
    Gosh, I'm sorry about your chicks... you're not having very good luck. Who knew there was such vicious wildlife around these parts?

    Hope your chick has a full recovery.
  10. Wolfpacker

    Wolfpacker Songster

    Jul 7, 2007
    I got up at 5:30 this AM to give her her antibiotics (amoxicillan, which I have taken lots of times before for sinus infections) and she seems to be doing OK. I kept her in the brooder for a couple of hours and then took her outside and put her in with her sisters. She's a bit listless and her wing is dragging the ground, but she is alert, eating, drinking, and I saw her chase a bug.

    [​IMG] Hope she makes it!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: