What is attacking my coop?

Ginger78

Chirping
Aug 20, 2019
25
44
54
I have had a coop in this house for 4 years. We are at the end of the court with about 1/2 an acre. My birds free range and I am not the best at closing my coop at night. We have 2 dogs and never had pest issues (minus bigger birds flying over during the day). Last week my daughter woke me up and said the chickens were screaming and an animal was screeching at them. Half asleep and panicked I ran out. The chickens were running into the walls and in complete panic. I opened the coop to look around and they all flew out. I was thinking something was in there. We walked the yard and couldn't find them. I woke up in the morning and 2 were back in the coop, 2 came back later that morning and one was gone. No sign of her being eaten but I was devastated as she was my sweetest chicken.

Last night the animal sound was back and the chickens were screaming. I learned my lesson and made sure it was secure and didn't open the door and they are all fine but does anyone know if this sounds like a raccoon? My daughter said it sounded scary and she was too afraid to let our smaller dog out even though she is our herder. She said it could be a coyote but we have a fence in a residential neighborhood. I am thinking cat or raccoon. Anyone have any advice to get rid of this pest? My poor chickens are terrified of whatever it is and I don't want to lose another one of my precious pets.
 

Willowspirit

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
Mar 14, 2019
1,863
5,449
442
Near Portland Oregon at 2Dogs Ranch North
Where do you live? By that I mean part of the country and what kind of landscape surrounds you?

Coyotes can jump or climb over fences as high as six feet so a coyote attack is not impossible.

If you borrow a game camera and put it up, you might get a picture of whatever it is. I’m sorry this is happening and you lost your hen. So sad and scary.
 

BaaKaaawk

Coopster
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Apr 4, 2011
823
2,584
311
Lexington, KY
So, first and foremost you need to close and lock that coop at night. That's just asking for trouble- neighborhood or not there are all types of predators out at night and chickens are literally sitting ducks to them in the dark. There is no excuse not to lock the coop at night (not being rude, that's just one of the most basic things you as a chicken keeper should be doing to protect your flock). :)

That said, you've defended against the predator with the closed coop... so your birds should be safe now. The issue is, whoever your predator is had a nice chicken dinner and knows there are 4 more dinners waiting for them... so you're going to need to catch/trap/repel it. I'd suggest the game camera option to find out what it is so you can take the proper action. For instance, fixing a coyote problem is a gun (because they are invasive killers of everything), fixing a cat can be easy- Possum/Raccoon can be trapped easily. Etc.
 

Ginger78

Chirping
Aug 20, 2019
25
44
54
Where do you live? By that I mean part of the country and what kind of landscape surrounds you?

Coyotes can jump or climb over fences as high as six feet so a coyote attack is not impossible.

If you borrow a game camera and put it up, you might get a picture of whatever it is. I’m sorry this is happening and you lost your hen. So sad and scary.

I live in a subdivision in CA. Not a rural area. We have seen coyote's walking the streets. My concern is that whatever it is knows that they are here and came back. My poor birds are so scared they aren't leaving the coop even in the day and usually they are yelling at me at 6am to let them out. I am getting a camera delivered today thanks to Amazon :)
 

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