What predator is this

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by TNBielefelder, Dec 7, 2015.

  1. TNBielefelder

    TNBielefelder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have lost a chicken each night for the last 4 nights and it always just eats the neck up and leaves the rest of the body. Is this a weasel?
     
  2. DeepDishChix

    DeepDishChix Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Could be a rat too. I actually have rats climbung in the citrus trees which are just one foot away from the coops. Its scary because the tree shakes and i can hear them when i go to lock the chickens up. We put bait out and this morning three bait were gone.
     
  3. hayley3

    hayley3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sounds like a raccoon.. Were your chickens in a coop? How did it get to your chickens? Do you live near water?
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2015
  4. hayley3

    hayley3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I found this info: When you find a bird dead inside a coop or run with its head and crop missing, your visitor was a raccoon. If the head and back of the neck are missing, suspect a weasel or mink. If the head and neck are missing, and feathers are scattered near a fence post, the likely perpetrator was a great horned owl.

    I'm not sure what the difference is between the crop and the neck. I thought they were the same thing.
     
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Where was the bird attacked...outside or in the coop?
    Was coop closed up tight?

    Coon would usually eat more than head.
    Weasels usually just drink blood from neck.
    Birds of prey (hawks - owls) will eat head first.
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    The crop is on the right side of chest at the bottom of the neck.
     
  7. TNBielefelder

    TNBielefelder Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The birds are inside a coop that is the main reason I thought of a weasel
     
  8. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Could a bird fly in or get like the chickens do?
     
  9. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    There are breaches in coop that, if not big enough for either the chickens or owls to get through, will allow for a weasel to weasel in? I'd be checking the interior for any "guests" that might be holed up inside 24/7 ('rafter raiders" aren't unknown - members have certainly had opossums "camping out" above the birds/in nest boxes, etc.).
    Once the interior is cleared, start checking for even the smallest holes where walls are attached to floor/loosely attached screening around windows, etc.
    also check under coop (if off of ground - if not, check for digging/holes in ground near/next to coop).
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I would go out to coop right now with flashlite and listen. Shine on coop as walking to it and watch for large grayish-brown moth like critter flying off from coop or near by.
     

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