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Chicken predator id

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We've had a predator attacking our chickens, but not sure what is attacking them. 

Oddly the bantams have been ok, but the Black Rhode Rock and Red Calder Ranger have both been attacked several times and finally taken. 

The Red Calder Ranger was attacked on the back, she had a puncture wound, lots of feathers missing, nursed her back to health in the house. Put her back outside with a saddle to protect her back from the cockerels. Did well, but 3 months later it was attacked again, all that was left was a trail of feathers. Saddle gone too. 

The Black Rhode Rock was attacked about 3 months ago, feathers everywhere, but escaped through the hedge, jumped down a 2m high wall, onto the road. She was the friendliest hen we had. Took us several days to catch her on the other side of the road as she was petrified, and took treats, but ran off into holly bushes as soon as we went near her. Had been attacked on her keel, which was bare of feathers, but just some scrapes. 

But she was taken this evening before dusk. Feathers left, and near our pond found intestines. 

We have an autodoor on our walk-in run, so they can free-range during the day. 

Any ideas what the predator could be?


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Yes, I don't think it's a fox, as in our old house we had foxes, and they tended to be pretty lethal and wouldn't leave a wounded chicken alive. Although we didn't have cockerels then.

With the Red Calder Ranger, it was just a single puncture wound, which was pencil sized, but lots of feathers missing, so was some struggle. 

We do have red kites around here, and I did see one taking a small bird once in our garden. But it sat in a tree afterwards and plucked the feathers, which leaves a neat cirular patch of feathers below the tree. Which I've found a few times. But in the chicken attacks, the feathers have been all spread out, like the chicken has been dragged along. 

I did install one of those outdoor wildlife cameras, but all it's snapped so far is the kids, cats and a hedgehog. 

But the good news is that this morning, just as I was about to tell the kids, guess who was clucking by the front door. That's right Misako, the Black Rhode Rock had survived and gone to ground somewhere. I did search over an hour for her last night, but she must have been well hidden. She's too jumpy to let me check her over, so will have to do it later when she's settled, but she looks ok apart from the missing feathers. 

Further inspection of the intestines in the light of day showed that it was the remains of a large mouse. Wasn't obvious in torch light. Maybe the predator is a cat. I did see one taking a large pigeon in our garden last year. 

Very relieved Misako is still with us. 

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Thanks for the Vit Boost advice. She calmed down a bit this evening, and managed to check her over.

She's been attacked in the same place as last time, along her keel, bare of feathers, and just a few scratches.

Will keep them in their run for a few days, and move my wildlife camera about in a few different locations to see what it snaps. 

Chicks moving outside soon too, so another thing to worry about.

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Thanks, security is ok as I have Omlet walk-in and Eglu runs. It's more a problem of when I let them free-range during the day. 

Thankfully Misako is doing fine, didn't even stop laying. 

Edited by dutchie
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