What could take a chicken...

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by busyteacher, Jul 31, 2011.

  1. busyteacher

    busyteacher Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 31, 2011
    Hi everyone! I am hoping someone might be able to help me. Something go into our chicken pen last night. Our rooster and one hen (both Buff Orpingtons) were dead inside the coop with no visible marks on their bodies. Two other hens are missing with no traces of them anywhere (no blood or feathers). One hen was outside of the fence. She has feather missing from the middle of her back and was bleeding slightly around her beak. Fortunately she is doing find today. The other 7 hens were huddled in a corner of the outside pen and refused to go back inside. We had to pick them up and put them in there. They were noisily protesting being locked inside. My question is what kind of predator could carry off two birds without leaving a trace? I live in East Texas where predators are rampant. Racoons, coyotes, bobcats, etc... Our outside fence is about 4 ft. tall so whatever got the two would have to be able to jump or climb over. When we were out there last night my husband shot at what he thought was a bobcat, but we couldn't find it. Would a bobcat be big enough to carry off two full grown birds? Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Quote:Dogs, coyotes, bobcat, foxes can all jump or climb a 4 foot fence. And yes, a bobcat can take two birds. He'll be back for more, whatever it is. Aren't they locked in the coop at night?
     
  3. busyteacher

    busyteacher Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 31, 2011
    Yes they are. They usually go inside the coop on their own at night and then we shut the door. We had just checked them at 7:45 and they were still outside scratching around. My father-in-law went out about an hour later to put them up and found the mess. We will make them go in early tonight. Might have my husband sit out there to see if it comes back and he can get it. We just thought it was strange that there were no feathers around from the two that were taken and no blood or marks on the ones that were dead inside. Hopefully we can get it quick. I would hate to lose more.
     
  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Yep, I'd get them inside early and watch for the culprit to return. Hope you find out what it is and don't lose anymore.
     

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