What's killing my chickens???

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by DTOWNGIRL, Oct 9, 2009.


    DTOWNGIRL In the Brooder

    Oct 9, 2009
    For the past two nights, I have lost a pullet in an enclosed pen INSIDE a concrete block barn. After the first loss, my husband pulled the fan from the window and closed and locked the window, then walked the barn and fixed any areas he thought something could possibly slip in at. This morning I go out and another chicken is dead!!! Both chickens were basically eaten by gutting and the heads were also gone. So if anybody has any ideas about who the culprit is AND what can I do to prevent it from happening again, I'd be forever grateful...I am heartsick over this. It has never happened before this year and we've had them for 5 years. The ducks, turkeys and other chickens and goats were NOT harmed. We are totally cleaning the barn this weekend from top to bottom searching for entrance points, but it would be helpful to know what we're looking for. Thanks to everyone who can help!
  2. gkeesling

    gkeesling Songster

    Nov 24, 2008
    Hagerstown, IN
    sounds like a coon or 'possum to me. They are small enough to get into places you normally wouldn't think they'd get into , and they won't eat the whole chicken. you may want to bait a trap or two and catch what ever it is.
  3. mxpres

    mxpres Songster

    Jan 21, 2009
    How many chickens do you have in the pen?It sounds a bit strange just one being killed each night.A raccoon would kill just for fun.
  4. briana1975

    briana1975 Songster

    Feb 23, 2009
    Carleton Mi.
    I thought I read in another post in the past missing head and gut only was a weasel. I maybe wrong. They can squeeze into VERY small spaces too that your husband could have over looked.
  5. denasfarm

    denasfarm Songster

    Jun 15, 2008
    Sweet Home Alabama!!
    Could be Rats. I am having a horrible time with rats! They will eat the brains and haul off anything they can drag.

    Sounds like a Possum or Weasel to me. I second the Coon would just kill them all for fun.

    On the other hand...Did you maybe lock this something IN the barn with the chickens?
  6. mikeksfarmer

    mikeksfarmer Songster

    Sep 16, 2008
    Bonner springs KS
    I think you have a raccoon and its holed up in your barn. I would set up a baby monitor and liston for him to come back with a loaded shot gun. I am sorry for your loss.
  7. here in arizona, skunks will gut a chicken and eat the head.
    they can dig and crawl over fencing like a cat.
    you should get a catch em alive trap, put some cat food in it and place it in the barn after the chickens have roosted, might catch your varment that way.
    good luck!

    DTOWNGIRL In the Brooder

    Oct 9, 2009
    Thank you EVERYONE...The entire outside coop area is enclosed ...6 foot high fences, netting over the entire area and 1/4 inch wire along the bottom of 1/2 inch wire fencing. If it's a weasel or a rat...(which is the direction I'm leaning) what do I do? Everyone (all the animals) are locked in the barn at night and I don't want to catch one of them in a trap placed in the barn...more suggestions, please.

    DTOWNGIRL In the Brooder

    Oct 9, 2009
    Sorry...I just reread the posts and to answer the question about how many chickens are in the pen...9(not counting the 2 killed) and a blind in one eye adult rooster. The pen is in a corner of the barn with 2 sides of 1/2 inch wire and 2 sides concrete block with a ply wood top which holds the goats' hay. All of the rest of the animals stay in the barn outside of this pen area during the night.
  10. the catchem alive trap, does not harm the animal, you can get them from a local animal control or feed store. do you have cats that live in your barn?

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