What kind of predator?? (graphic images)

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Noobchick, Dec 23, 2012.

  1. Noobchick

    Noobchick Songster

    May 23, 2011
    Creedmoor, NC
    Hubby and I bought a farm a couple months ago, not intending to get any animals until we finished renovation on the house. But surprise!! The previous owner left about 30 chickens, all but 12 of which we re-homed. The previous owner had so many chickens that the ramshackle coop she had up couldn't fit them all, so the overflow chickens got used to roosting in trees and bushes. The farm is 30 minutes away from our current house- I go up once a day, but can't make the trip twice a day to let them in and out of the coop, even assuming that I can train them to use it.

    Over the last few days, we've lost two chickens. The first one is pictured. One has gone missing today- I'm halfway expecting to find her carcass somewhere tomorrow.

    The one pictured went missing one day, and was found ripped apart the next day.

    I have several questions:

    1. What kind of predator am I dealing with? Coyote? Fox? What would eat the neck and wings like that?

    2.Given that I can't be there as much as I'd like, what can I do to try to prevent more attacks? I can't just stand by and let this thing pick off the farm birds one by one. Besides the losses, I don't want a predator thinking my farm is a fast food restaurant.



  2. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I don't know the answer to your question, but I have read about battery-operated coop door openers (automatic door openers) for sale. That might be helpful for protecting the ones who go into the coop at night. Of course they also sell the electric ones but I was thinking maybe you don't have electric out there.

  3. americana-lover

    americana-lover Songster

    Apr 13, 2012
    i would say a small fox or young coyote. Something that is small enough that would not take the chicken with them. Ive heard stories of raccoons attacking chickens, along with possums.
  5. Noobchick

    Noobchick Songster

    May 23, 2011
    Creedmoor, NC
    We lost another one today. This is getting d**n old.

    Chickengeorgeto: thank you for your reply. After doing some research, I think you're right. And I now KNOW i heard an owl hooting. Thank you very much!
  6. grokie18

    grokie18 Hatching

    Dec 9, 2011
    If i'm not mistaking that should be a raccoon i have had the same probly with them before.
  7. Azriel

    Azriel Songster

    Jun 19, 2010
    I agree with Chickengeorgrto, if it is happening at night it is most likley an owl, if it is during the day then a hawk or eagle. If you can try to lock your birds up for a few days, If there is no food for them for a few days then they will move on to better hunting,

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by