skunk questions

claraserena(4)May 18, 2008

Late this afternoon I saw a skunk next to the pen/hut where we have our broody hen and her chick. The skunk had its hand through the wire mesh--the chickens were in the hut so no harm done. The skunk slinked off when we came out the front door and went into tall grass. Since then I have brought the mom and chick into the mudroom for the night.

Questions: Do skunks prey on chickens? This one was certainly interested. What can we do to get rid of the skunk?

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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

YES THEY DO, AND THE RESULTS ARE HORRIBLE.

You spotted exactly what they do: reach THROUGH the wire and simply grab a bird, hold it and with the other paw, scoop meat out of the back of the bird. A lot of times the chicken survives this horrific experience until you find it in the morning, and are faced with either euthanizing the bird or trying to get a large wound healed. :( Raccoons do this, too--and THEY arrive in groups!

A motion activated light may help...but you really need to get mama and babies (and the rest of the flock, too) out of arms' reach of the skunk--or put up hardware cloth, which is welded wire with small, square openings that NOTHING can reach through, short of a mouse or rat.

Skunks are smart, nasty predators; it'll be back. I'm not sure, but I'll bet they try and dig UNDER the wire to get at the birds as well, so seal off that avenue of access too.

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 4:41AM
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