Post by simplynaturalfarm on Feb 8, 2019 13:13:57 GMT -5
something is killing our chickens every night. Pulls head and wings off, eats from neck inwards and eats guts and breast. Crawls into coop every night. This is it's track. Walks single file with footprints 6-10 inches apart. The track itself is only about 2 inches wide, by 1.5 long, but it sinks into fresh snow about 4-5 inches deep. We have lost our silkies Hen and 10 egg layers the last few days.
My first guess was cat. Following to see what you catch! Rachel
Me, my Hubby, and four Littles one horse - Cappy A burgeoning goat herd 35+ British White and Angus mama cows, and several bulls My milk cows: Faith, Chick and Freckles Heifers coming up - Dolly Dixie RIP
Post by simplynaturalfarm on Feb 8, 2019 13:47:48 GMT -5
We have two stray cats but they are tiny and follow our plowed trails. This predator chooses to walk in deep snow from a brush pile to the coop, never using our 10 foot wide path only 10 feet away.
It Walks single file everywhere - no looping gait like a Weasley or Martin.
The wild cats run our path every day. Not sure why they would use deep snow. Also in our experience from the cats are in this deep snow they bounce from spot to spot so they're really doesn't get wet. This thing is heavier, sinks in about 3 to 4 in in the snow and still walk single file without dragging its belly. I don't think the cats could even do this.
I don't know!! If it's a bobcat our such that would be insane here.
I say cat, too. It looks just like our wild cats' tracks, only bigger. Our ferals wouldn't dream of taking on a chicken, however, so even though it might be uncommon, I think you have a bobcat. Cats only retract their front claws, but the back ones don't retract, so those would leave small claw marks if they were long enough.
I wish I could loan you Jasper for a while. He'd make short work of ANYTHING that tried to hurt "his" chickens.
Post by simplynaturalfarm on Feb 8, 2019 15:33:28 GMT -5
Me too lannie. We had a lgd and he almost killed our two cattle dogs - he turned mean last year and I don't know why. He was only 2 years old and a flip switched one day and for next month he attacked the other dogs until he almost killed my Jonah and then shook my 4 month old pop 1/2 his size, so I put him down.
Post by simplynaturalfarm on Feb 8, 2019 15:51:14 GMT -5
I sent pictures and info to my bil who is a trapper and he said yes, a bobcat, and I'll need a live bait trap and fur bearer license. Too cold for me to put a chicken in a trap!! I'm going to go plug every home I can find and on the ceiling. So im going to lock a dog in there tonight with a nice kennel and he'll be fine. I'm sure the only reason we having issues is outside dog has been living inside since the fire.
The problem is the wall is 20 feet inside the front of my hoophouse. Normally your build your front wall and wrap plastic over the front and affix it, so no gaps, but front 20 feet are own for grain cart, and webuilt along a hoop inside. DH wouldnt use the jig saw to follow hoop outline and so there are gaps at top from his square cuts.
So there’s a 20 foot space between the outer wall and the coop wall?
Any way you can run a Hotwire in that empty space? Zap the thing so it doesn’t want to come back. It’ll be lured to the chickens because they’re the easiest prey in all that snow. All it’s normal food will be well buried. If you can give it a good shock maybe it’ll decide it’s better to stay outside and hunt.
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