What killed my chicken? GRAPHIC PIC

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by jdywntr, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    We got home this afternoon and found that something had killed one of my 8 week old jersey giants this was one of the smaller ones and probably weighed about 1.5-2lbs. I have looked into what it may have been but there seems to be some conflicting evidence.

    This is what I found.
    The chicken was obviously killed about 10' from the coop door. There were feathers and some intestines there.
    A few feet further, there was a pile of more feathers.
    A few more feet, more feathers. There were 4 piles of feathers ranging over about 30'.
    Then, there was the carcass. Head and wings still there. Most of the breast meat and organs gone. There were no obvious teeth marks.

    I was thinking a hawk, there has been one around occassionally but the crows in the area usually chase it off. But after reading about predator ID, most things say usually the animal is carried off. Then I was thinking cat but thought that 5 piles of feathers may have been alot.
    My birds, chickens, ducks and geese, all free range. I'm wondering if whatever it was got scared off by the other birds before finishing it's meal. There are also horses and donkeys in the pasture that may have scared off something.
    Here is a pic of the carcass.
  2. americana-lover

    americana-lover Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2012
    Do you have foxes running around? Maybe a coyote? Feral cats? Possible a hawk? Dog that got looses? The possibilities are kinda endless...

    I'm so sorry for your loss :(:( :(:(:(:(:(:(:(:(:(
  3. ChickPrincess

    ChickPrincess Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 6, 2012
    Canandaigua NY
    Sorry for your loss. :(
    I'm leaning towards a raccoon. A chicken farmer friend told me they are notorious for basically gutting a chicken, filleting them open and leaving them like that. They typically leave a big mess behind. Do you know what time of day it was?
  4. CluckyCharms

    CluckyCharms Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm sorry for your loss :( I don't know what killed your chickabeebee but I'm sorry it happened.
  5. BantyChickenLuv

    BantyChickenLuv Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 26, 2012
    I'm thinking raccon, but a coyote is a possibilty. Raccons will get in the coop with their opasable thumbs and take what they want and leave a huge mess. That's why it's important to have raccon-proof laches.
  6. oregonkat

    oregonkat Overrun With Chickens

    Oct 5, 2012
    Southern Oregon
    Hi, very sorry about your loss. I'm new on the forum but have lost some of my hens to a hawk and with yours being so light in weight, I doubt that the hawk would have eaten her right there. My hens disappeared completely and only by catching the hawk in action with one of my bigger hens that he couldnt get off the ground did I figure out that that was what had taken the others. My bet would be on a coon and unfortunately once they have figured out how to get a nice juicy chicken, they are usually back regularly. Just a thought. Kat
  7. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    Thanks for the replies. I don't think a raccoon because it happened between 10 am and 2 pm not at night. We do have foxes and coyotes but I have never seen either only been told about the foxes and heard the coyotes at night.
    I found some feathers in the coop but I'm not 100% that they were from this chicken. If they were, then I'm thinking something stalked then chased into the coop and killed it in the run then plucked and ate as it went. Because there was so much eaten I don't think a dog since they usually kill for sport and I haven't seen any loose around.
    I don't think that it occured that long before I found it because there weren't many ants on it and some of the giants were in the other birds coop (which I have never seen) and the rest were in their coop. So, they were still spooked. The other birds didn't appear spooked so I don't think it could have been something that big as the geese would have been going nuts.
    It stinks not knowing. Also it was 1 of only 5 splash giants that I had in the group. [​IMG]
  8. aprophet

    aprophet Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 12, 2010
    chesapeake Va.
    coon do not care what time of day a chicken dinner happens ,a largish possum will make a messy kill much like your picture
  9. Back2MyRoots

    Back2MyRoots Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 3, 2012
    Auburn, Alabama
    To be "scattered" that way, it most likely was not a hawk. But it could have been anything from a feral cat to a coyote and everything in between. I will tell you that, imo, it was probably a dog. My reasoning is that most wild animals would have killed or disabled that bird and then carried it off. Dogs will kill and dismember any where as long as they don't feel threatened.
  10. Gumpwhite

    Gumpwhite Chillin' With My Peeps

    I would say a wild cat. I have had problems like This sOme at night some during the day. I found out it was a cat because is scaled my wood fence to kill a broody hen and her chicks and couldn't get back out. Bye bye kitty

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by