what the hell is getting my chickens

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by brazosbluz, May 13, 2010.

  1. brazosbluz

    brazosbluz Out Of The Brooder

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    May 13, 2010
    i am fairly new to owning chickens...had 25 last summer...now down to one big long island red rooster and a banty....the last 2 weeks ive lost 5 hens at nite in the pen...just dissappeared..found a few feathers...last night it got the last big red hen i had and the rooster ran up and roosted on the front porch at 2 am...where i live in central texas there are a few foxes..skunks..and occaisonal bobcat...any ideas?...its getting them off the roost 4 feet above ground...also..anyone tell me how to know if eggs are fertile or not?..ive had 40 eggs in the incubater and the the old banty hatched her chicks fibe outside..i havent gotten one chick from tha 100 dollar incbater...any help and advice would be greatly appreciated..btw..my rooster wont stay in the pen no more...hes on the porch again tonight!
     
  2. TipsyDog

    TipsyDog Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2009
    Aregua, Paraguay
    Pen? You need a coop! Chickens should be secured in a proper coop at night. Your pen probably does not have hardware cloth, buried into the ground? You have serious security breaches. I suggest you place your rooster in a dog carrier, or something and lock him in a garage or shed for the night or he'll be a goner too....

    Look around here on BYC and you'll learn about keeping chickens responsibly. Good Luck!
     
  3. crtrlovr

    crtrlovr Still chillin' with my peeps

    could easily be a raccoon. sorry for your losses. If you plan to try again (or protect the ones you have left) you will HAVE to give them a safe secure place to roost that nothing bigger than a pencil lead can get into. Use 1/4" welded wire over windows or vents, put gravel outside your run walls or bury your run skirting to extend at least 1' out. I have a very, VERY large run so I didn't gravel or bury skirting, but they get put inside their secure house every night, and can not get out before I let them out in the mornings. I lost several to a coyote (one at 11:00 a.m. snatched right out of the yard WHILE I WAS CUTTING GRASS ON THE RIDING MOWER!!!), and it really stinks. Raccoons are magnificent climbers and can climb just about anything except something super slick. Again, I'm sorry for your losses.
     
  4. D'Angelo N Va.

    D'Angelo N Va. Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 28, 2009
    Well a fox will take the chicken with out leaving any feathers I know for a fact..you have got to have more secure pen...not to say that something still will not happen, but it lowers your chances.
     
  5. schellie69

    schellie69 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 8, 2009
    Kansas
    I have a secure run/coop a fox would take the chicken and run off and eat it away from where it took it. I would put you other chickens in a shed or garage somewhere you can lock them up I am sorry you have lost so many chickens but since the predator knows how and where to get a free meal it won't stop coming back till all your chickens are gone or you build a better coop/pen
     
  6. rancher hicks

    rancher hicks Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 28, 2009
    Syracuse, NY
    the admins don't like truthful answers so I'll be as polite as I can.
    If you had 25 chickens and they started disappearring and you have done nothing to protect them? Then please give the two left away and stay out of the chicken business! YAI.
     
  7. Hillsvale

    Hillsvale Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 20, 2009
    Hillsvale, Nova Scotia
    Well obviously if you have had these birds for a year you have been very lucky up until now... and you now have been offering something a free lunch [​IMG] .... I can't suggest what got them but you really do need to lock them up at night... like one poster ,my run is really large so burying the skirting wasn't an option but nothing is getting them at night..

    I will comment........ if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. The OP was asking for help not criticism.

    BTW: [​IMG] , generally there is lots of good advice...

    Shelley
     
  8. brazosbluz

    brazosbluz Out Of The Brooder

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    May 13, 2010
    thanks for the replys...it seems it may be my own fault...my pen or coop...is about 20 by 20 fenced in and lined with chicken wire it has a shed attached....with a door...that thye roost in and lay eggs etc....ive not been securing it lately at night as the chickens have roamed the property during the day and went in on their own at night....i need to secure then pen better at night ...thanks...just would like to know what all ofthe sudden it was that passed by....
     
  9. Hillsvale

    Hillsvale Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 20, 2009
    Hillsvale, Nova Scotia
    Something with a huge appetite! [​IMG]

    It's spring and critters want to feed their babies... locking yours up at night will make things easier for your chickens and might redirect your predator. Here we have everything from bald eagles, hawks, bears right down to skunk!... I can imagine that many birds gone would be your bob cat or a really hungry raccoon, it shocks me how these things can walk away with a bird with no evidence to speak of!
     
  10. brazosbluz

    brazosbluz Out Of The Brooder

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    May 13, 2010
    btw ...for those critical...i adopted these chickens.... a person gown the road got forclosed on and abandoned them there....along with 2 dogs...which i have also....ill secure the pen better at night...i had worked alot on it before....but obviously not enough...thanks again
     

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