It seems to be that every predator’s favorite food is chicken. We always lose at least two birds a year to predators. One year we lost thirteen. Yes, thirteen. Those owls that are all the fad are quite fond of chicken. I am not fond of owls. I did manage to outwit them, though, and haven’t had much trouble since. Usually, we lose one chicken to a hawk. Something chewed through plastic chicken wire to get to one last summer. I don’t recommend plastic chicken wire. Get the real thing.
This morning I sent the children out to get the eggs. They came running in out of breath.
” Mom, one of the naked neck chickens is dead!”
When I got down to check on the chickens, I found one dead and one wounded.
Something had killed it and tried to pull it through the slats of the turkey coop that is right next door. The chickens sleep on a beam between their coop and the turkey coop. (currently empty) From what I could gather by the evidence, something must have spooked the chickens. When they flew down, it caught them and proceeded to try to pull them through the slats. They are a bit too big fit through the slats. It nibbled on what it could get at. The culprit also managed to slash up one other chicken pretty badly.
The wounded chicken looks pretty tough. It had blood all over its head and some good sized gashes on its wing and leg. It is currently residing in an old, covered laundry basket in the basement. It did eat and drink a little and escaped before I covered the basket. When I put it in it didn’t look like it was going anywhere, but I suspect when it saw my sorted laundry it thought it looked far more comfortable than a sheet of newspaper. I cleaned the chicken’s wounds and put some salve on and cayenne. We will see how it is in the morning. I think if it makes it through tonight it will be okay. Either way, I don’t think she will be giving me much information to go on.
Whatever did the attack also was eating some dead mice that drowned in a bucket of water and lives in the storage part of the shed. It left some tracks for me to follow, so I know it is a small, four footed creature. I got a somewhat hard to see picture of its tracks. Any ideas? My Dad thinks it is a weasel.
“It” got my other rooster this morning. After some more thought, I am thinking I may be dealing with a ‘possom.