What would eat just the bunnies head and leave the body at night?

luvarabhorses

Songster
11 Years
Oct 1, 2008
606
1
154
Hector, Ar
My friend is just getting into this and she unknowingly let her big standard chinchilla rabbit roam in the chain linked fence (about 4 ft tall) free range chicken area at night. She came out yesterday morning to find her bunny dead with just the head gone. Any ideas what it could have been? a sad day!
 

I have WHAT in my yard?

Songster
11 Years
Jun 24, 2008
3,626
7
211
Eggberg, PA
I've seen owls do this as well as hawks. They don't do it on purpose (I don't think) I think it is a strike they cannot come back to finish for some reason.

Does they head look like it was cut off or torn?
 

sandspoultry

Everybody loves a Turkey
11 Years
Feb 10, 2008
2,121
23
211
Eastern NC
it was an owl, hawks won't hunt at night. That is classic owl, I have no idea why they just eat the head though?

Steve in NC
 

whitecra

Songster
11 Years
Mar 12, 2008
1,006
3
181
Oklahoma
I would say it was a owl. I had one get one of my silkies and all he ate was the head and neck. There wasn't even any blood around. I know it was an owl because he couldn't find his way out of the pen. We saw him that morning still in there.
Chris
 

gypsy2621

Songster
11 Years
Jun 29, 2008
3,409
3
201
New Hampshire
Friend of mine just lost several to this same thng, he caught the culprit as it ran off with just the head.
It was a coon.
 

jvls1942

Free Ranging
11 Years
Oct 16, 2008
12,314
5,926
581
wausau,wisconsin
coon or fox or owl..
a fox or coon will sometimes kill 2 or more birds and chew off the heads and then carry one off. they will come back laer and carry off the headless ones..

the owl might have been frightened off before he could shred the carcass..

also, did you find the bunny with his headless neck tight to a hole in the fence?? then I would start to look for a weasel..
 

ocean_rain21

In the Brooder
10 Years
Mar 5, 2009
31
1
22
Nova Scotia
My dog...:S she came home with a rabbit head the other day :S

They are right, that is typical owl hunting behaviour.
Sorry about your friends bunny, its never a good day when a loved pet dies
 

lisahaschickens

Songster
10 Years
Feb 25, 2009
1,018
23
161
Vancouver, WA
We had a family of wild mallards nesting in our front yard last year and a raccoon came and pulled the heads off all the babies and the mama. Left all the pieces behind. Just murdered them all and left the bodies and heads lying around on the ground.

So, I would say Raccoon... or perhaps an owl as others have suggested. Probably a great horned owl if so. They'll eat anything, even small dogs and cats.
 

scogind

In the Brooder
11 Years
Dec 29, 2008
36
0
21
I don't know if this is the case here, but bears that are preparing for hybernation gorges so much on salmon that they will start taking just one bite out of the fish and leave the rest. They bite a chunk out of the top of the head that includes the brain and eyes. Supposedly these are the most nutrious, higher protein/calories, part of the fish.
 

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