What might have killed hen found outside coop whose only wound was to tip of wing?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by kaddidle, Jan 2, 2014.

  1. kaddidle

    kaddidle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 23, 2010
    I have a small suburban backyard flock that has fluctuated between 2 and 4 birds over the past few years. Most recently I had a 3 y/o White Rock, a 2 y/o Production Red, and a 1 y/o Barred Rock.

    One morning a few days ago I found the Barred Rock dead outside the coop near the front door. There were a few feathers scattered near her body, but the only wound we could find was to the tip of one wing, where feathers and skin were removed down to the meat. I'd been out the evening before so I hadn't checked the birds since I'd opened the hatch for them to come out the previous morning, so I'm not sure what time the attack occurred.

    The other birds were unscathed and acting normal.

    I would guess that the attack could have been a dog, except that the hens' coop is inside of a chain link/privacy fence used by my dogs, who were indoors the whole day and night before except when I let them out right before bed, when I assume the chicken was probably already dead or else on the roost. (They are chicken-friendly)

    Would a neighborhood dog have climbed into the fence to go after chickens? I also wondered if possibly a nocturnal predator like a raccoon could have gotten her and been trying to drag her away by the wing, but then been scared off by my dogs.
  2. cochinator

    cochinator Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 18, 2013
    Hawks remove a lot of feathers on the spot and dig their talons in under the wings. Probably a hawk.

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