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Bad predator problem

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Dave H (MI)
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:06 am    Post subject: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Something is killing our turkeys. We have raised Narragansett turkeys for the last 10-12 years and heavy geese for decades. Never much of a problem. Geese can take care of themselves and the turkeys roost on an elevated A-frame with two levels, one about 4 feet up and the other close to 8 feet high. We have two toms that sit on the ground. Started about three weeks back when a hen brooding 7 chicks was attacked in the night. Killed the hen, all the chicks missing. About a week ago a hen was attacked on her perch at night but we heard it and rescued her. Never saw the attacker. This morning a hen was found dead on the lawn. Since they roost high my first thought is a raccoon, but this hen (based on the feather trail) was chased back and forth over a two acre enclosure until she was finally caught. Was eaten right out in the open. Head and neck gone and internals eaten out of body. Intestines piled on ground near body. Most of the breast area eaten also. Does this sound like a coon to you all? Seems like it went to a lot of effort to catch her and we don't generally have trouble with them attacking the larger birds. I am putting out the usual Coke/fly bait cocktail for the next few nights and will continue until I kill everything in the area. If it turns out to be a coyote, fox or feral dog will these take the bait also or do I need to put out something else?
 
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Mike Groom
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:18 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Sounds more like a dog problem,coyote or fox will carry it off and will not waste anything,dogs kill for fun and only eat part of it.
 
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jeffcat
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:19 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Go to a gun show and pick up a pair of night vision goggles. The Russian ones are cheap enough and with a little practice you can use them to shoot through. DO NOT expose them to daylight! Let us know.
 
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Billy NY
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:20 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I'd get a game cam set up, knowing what you are dealing with will certainly help. It sounds out of the ordinary, with no clues, any tracks, signs, fur or anything, sometimes you have to look real close. Racoons and Coyotes will leave scat nearby, I find it when they are around here, + you will likely hear coyotes at some point, they will howl. I'd opt for some kind of camera set up, valuable information. Won't hurt to keep the bait out as long as your pets or wanted critters don't get to it.
 
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glennster
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:22 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

could either be a weasel, mink, marten or fisher cat. coon would eat all the insides and most all the critter.
 
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glennster
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:31 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

a bridger 120 bodygrip trap would get em .
 
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oldtanker
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:31 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

glennster wrote:
(quoted from post at 08:22:20 06/11/14) could either be a weasel, mink, marten or fisher cat. coon would eat all the insides and most all the critter.


Gotta agree, sounds most like a weasel to me.

Rick
 
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macec3(TX)
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:37 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I agree with Billy NY. A game camera picture will also show what time the predator is coming to you place. May give you an edge by letting you know what time to be expecting the varmit.
 
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Prawn Farmer
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:42 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

We had that problem and turned out to be mink and weasels. The mink weren't big enough to cart off the entire ducks they killed so just ate until full. They were havoc on our prawn population, too. Some live traps will tell the tale the first night.
 
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Fergienewbee
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:09 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I'll side on a dog. Mink and weasels usually just bite the head/neck area. Doubt weasel could move a turkey hen and mink would be a struggle. I don't believe these two could eat that much at one sitting. JMO.

Larry
 
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Dave H (MI)
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:09 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

There are no marten or fisher in this area. We do have mink but the are rare and they stick to the bottom land. These birds are housed on land that is just a few hundred feet shy of being the highest spot in SE Michigan. It's possible but not sure on that one. Weasels around here are really small. Small enough that a turkey might actually eat the weasel. Never saw one big enough to kill a 20+ pound turkey but, even if it could, it couldn't eat the quantity of meat this critter ate last night. Weasels are here on occasion but never had trouble with one. Thinking this is something bigger.
 
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Dave H (MI)
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:12 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

I have one. Left it set up for over a week in various areas. Only pictures I got were of turkeys. They like the shiny lens and stand in front of it all day. No night time photos yet but still trying. The other thing is that larger predators like coyote and fox are really tough to catch on the trailcam. Either they move faster than the shutter or there is another problem. I have had a camera at the farm for 3 years. Lots of deer, lots of coyote tracks...only pictures of deer. Spooky how they don't get snapped. Only two pics of coyote/fox in three years.
 
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Dave H (MI)
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:15 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

When the first one was killed that is what I told the girls. There was an aspect to it of mauling that made me think that it was no experienced predator. And it had been carried. If it is a dog he is as good as dead. I will shoot it if I catch it but don't have to. In this county a couple of years back two people were killed by roaming dogs. Policy at the courthouse now is to have ALL dogs destroyed who have any reported aggression. They are really serious about it. You just have to drop a dime.
 
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RyaninKS
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:22 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

Got any badgers in your area?
 
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glennster
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:39 am    Post subject: Re: Bad predator problem Reply to specific post Reply with quote

bobcat would be another thought.
 
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