What on earth killed our chickens?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by C0ckatrice, Mar 21, 2018.

  1. C0ckatrice

    C0ckatrice In the Brooder

    Mar 21, 2018
    Recently we have been having trouble with predators. Witch we never have. We had 5 chickens left before spring, they where 2 years old. Suddenly one morning we found 2 of them dead in the coup without their heads. Feathers everywhere. The same thing happens to one of our family members who lives less than a mile away. The coup was unlocked so we thought if we closed it that would be the end of things. But then today, we found another chicken half pulled through the chicken wire, with its head missing on the other side. Did a raccoon kill the 2 chickens then use its hands to drag the other chicken partly through the fence holes?
  2. Drea07

    Drea07 Chirping

    Apr 1, 2015
    Isanti County, MN
    Sounds like a racoon. Had the same thing happen to some of my girls and a rooster.
    An owl will take the head as well, but the pulling through th fence is more than likely a racoon.

    You need hardware cloth over the chicken wire.
    Hen Pen Jem, lclark and ChooksNQuilts like this.
  3. happyfrenchman

    happyfrenchman Crowing

    Dec 20, 2008
    Central Ga.
    That is tough... sorry. Racoons will take the head off and they could possibly gain entrance from an unlocked door. But they might kill them all in one setting.
    I once found a headless chicken under the coop. The predator had, as yours has done, pulled it's head off on the other side of the run and the headless bird managed to get under the coop. I never did figure what did it. I put chicken wire over the dog wire and never had it happen again.
    lclark likes this.
  4. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Crowing

    Jul 3, 2016
    Pac NW
    My Coop
    I agree that sounds like raccoon, and this is why chicken wire alone isn't sufficient for protection. You want to add hardware cloth to prevent predators from reaching through, or electrical fencing might also be an option.
    Table4Six, lclark and ChooksNQuilts like this.
  5. bbgranch

    bbgranch Chirping

    Jul 22, 2015
    Goldthwaite, Texas
    Coon. They will be back. Plug the holes and use hardware cloth. Trap them and dispatch
  6. Clemmy

    Clemmy Chirping

    Mar 16, 2018
    racoon, if you see no visible large enrtyways, they can be sneaky. make sure you have proper caging with NO gaps. :jumpy
    lclark, Table4Six and happyfrenchman like this.
  7. Table4Six

    Table4Six Crossing the Road

    May 22, 2012
    Definitely a raccoon. They often behead their victim and leave everything else behind. They're wasteful hunters and kill for fun. As above posters stated you need to close all gaps and make sure they have a secure coop to sleep at night. Did this happen during the day?
    Clemmy likes this.
  8. HenHouse4Life

    HenHouse4Life GrandmaOnDuty

    Mar 22, 2016
    Mid Michigan
    I'm so sorry that you have had this happen. Hardware cloth is a must for protecting the flock against all kinds of predators. We use hardware cloth on the sides and bottom and all upper areas are covered. Good luck to you and I hope you can live trap the coons and relocate them.
  9. It's a racoon no doubt. Secure the area they will be back and are very intelligent in finding a way inside so do not underestimate them. GOOD LUCK
    happyfrenchman likes this.

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