Over the past couple of weeks have taken a huge toll on my chickens. Several of them have gone missing, with just a few feathers in the chicken yard. From the trail of feathers, something drug the chicken from the chicken house.
It is not a chicken hawk, because there is no body. Chicken hawks do not eat the bones.
A trail camera in the chicken yard showed a couple of raccoons and an opossum.
Opossums will not drag a chicken off. It will eat the chicken in the chicken house.
In the past 6 – 8 months I have easily lost close to a dozen and a half chickens to a Coyote. Lets say that each chicken lays 200 eggs a year. By losing just 18 chickens the coyote has cost me around 3,600 eggs over the course of a year.
It would be easy to put out some foothold traps, but what about my dogs getting into them? I could not forgive myself if someones pet got into a foothold trap. To take care of the coyote problem and prevent the accidental trapping of pets I ordered an Extreme Dimension EDMR302 remote control call and a Mojo Outdoors Critter Decoy.
I bought both of them off Amazon, total price on December 26, 2015 was $169.80, including shipping.
When my wife and I moved to the farm in august 2013, we arrived with 13 hens. The hens were a little over a year and a half old. Those 13 hens were laying around 9 – 10 eggs a day.
With that 9 – 10 eggs a day I tried to estimate how many chickens and eggs my family would need during a long term SHTF situation. In a previous article we got an estimated number of around 75 chickens or so to satisfy our egg and chicken meat production needs.
In the past 3 months something happened that has thrown a serious kink into my chicken flock plans.
Out of the original 13 hens, only 8 remain.
Out of the 24 chicks my wife and I bought in February 2014, only about 12 remain.
In other words, we have lost about 1/2 of our flock in the past few months.