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What do you think killed my chicken? UPDATE!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by chicamama, Aug 3, 2008.

  1. chicamama

    chicamama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 12, 2008
    Topanga Ca
    Arggggg
    [​IMG]
    Well, low and behold as I left for my early morning walk with my dogs, I spot someone leaving my neighbors property. Must be a houseguest and guess what's walking next to him.............a big shep x dog.
    I'm not 100%, but my guess is he's staying there and his dog did the damage to the little buff hen. I can only blame myself because my hens FR on their property (with their blessings) if they feel like wondering over. I only wish I had known they were having a house guest with a dog and I would have kept the girls locked up.
    [​IMG]

    On the *bright* side. Mystery solved and maybe we can discuss it as good neighbors do. Our properties are next door and even if my chickens were not on their property, a strange dog visiting could easily run over to ours. Hmmmm..............Ahhh to live on 1000 acres alone. Again, I'm not mad, just a little sad that no one was watching thier loose dog. I will try and discuss it without them feeling defensive. Again, I blame myself.




    ONe hen dead. My hens free range during the day. Yesterday, I found my buff O dead. We are trying to figure out who/what?

    Middle of the day.
    next to house.
    did not carry body off.
    feathers everywhere.

    ??

    I can tell you it was not a dog. We do have coyotes, but they do not normally come around during the middle of the day. The body is real close to the house.

    Any thoughts? The other chickens seem fine. Why wouldn't a wild animal take off with the body. I left it out there last night (I could not move it with DH not home and my little kid too close) but I figured whatever killed it would maybe come back and drag it off. It didn't. DH will deal with it this am. Maybe he'll have more to report. My other hens are begging to get out of their coop? I would think they would want to stay locked up/safe?
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2008
  2. chicamama

    chicamama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Would a hawk carry off the body? This was a big chicken. We have red tailed hawks.
     
  3. dixiechick

    dixiechick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Is her body damaged other than missing feathers? My initial thought....a hawk/eagle, who may have dropped her???
     
  4. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Wow, that is truly a mystery.
     
  5. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    Maybe a hawk of some sort? It may have been scared off from taking the carcass away, or the bird was too heavy. Let your other birds, out. Just keep an eye on them. They have no concept of what happened to their roost-mate
     
  6. chicamama

    chicamama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Really? I was thinking they would all behunkered down this am in mourning, but not these hens. They are all lined up begging to get out and rooy around. Dh is going to get a closer lok in the daylight so maybe he'll be able to indentify more clues.

    After reading the link Poultry Predator Identification above it *sounds* like a dog, but my dogs were locked up (I know, I know, a lot of good they do protecting when locked up) and my
    neighbor' dog is about 14 and could not see a hen let alone catch one.
     
  7. dixygirl

    dixygirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 14, 2008
    I have learned a lot from this predator section.

    It seems very clear now from reading everyone's posts that whenever birds are turned loose outside with no enclosure (free range), some will definitely be killed. So far these cases seem to be the majority of the casualties followed by those who have housing with the flaws also warned against here.

    Are you going to continue free ranging them?
    Good luck with your decision.

    PS I have the sneakiest suspicion that the neighbor's actions were no accident but their way of dealing with having your birds in their yard constantly. I do everything in my power to make sure mine can not get out to go onto anyone's property. I do this out of courtesy and also so i can demand the same in turn since i would be livid if anyone else's animals came into my yard. I think it is just part of being a good neighbor. They do say good fences make good neighbors. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2008
  8. chicamama

    chicamama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Well, your suspicions are incorrect. My neighbors were sad to learn that their visiting sister's dog did the deed. Very sad. Their children LOVE LOVE LOVE our chickens coming over. I guess we have a different relationship with our neighbors here than you do.

    Yes, I do plan on letting the ladies FR during the day. Sad to lose one here and there, but we'll work with it (keeping them as *safe* as possible) until proven otherwise. If it comes down to we lose chickens all the time, we will reevaluate the plan. For now, they can be loose during the day when we are home.

    I do agree that FR is not a chicken lifestyle everyone here agrees with, but for now, we are ok with it. It is very unfortunate that we lost the little hen to a strangers dog, but I feel confident my neighbors got the message. They are very sad.
     
  9. chicamama

    chicamama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Correct me if I'm wrong, but you would turn a dog loose on a hen if they were in your yard? I'm a little shocked if I read that correctly?
     
  10. dixygirl

    dixygirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No i would not. But some people absolutely would. Some neighbors will say that they don't mind your animals eating their flowers but deal with it in a stealth manner.


    Be all that as it may, I just think it is our personal responsibility to set a good example and keep our animals in our own yards. Dogs have to stay in their yards or you get a fine or impoundment. I do not expect my chickens to be entitled to anything other. My neighbor also claims to love mine but I feel it my personal responsibility to respect their space. Sure they can come over if they want to see them. But i do not wear out my welcome, feel entitled to trespass or lax. Everyone is different.

    Good luck with your choices.
    dixy
     

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