Wow! What a Killer!
It was the night before Halloween. We noticed some commotion going on in the chicken coop on the coop ip cameras.
When the particular camera was selected it was clear we had a problem. I headed down to the coop as quickly as I could get my boots on and get there. The varmit was gone, one hen gasped a few last breaths, and so many others that succumbed to the attack.
The count was 14 that had died, many the Buff Orpington chicks we bought in early September, so now about 6 or 7 weeks old. One of the two Plymouth Barred Rock chicks from the same date also died.
The geese and many of the remaining chickens “flew the coop” as soon as I opened the door.
I noticed the varmit put its victims into piles in several places, mostly in corners. Also, the chickens had all died from vampire like bites to their necks, and my impression was something sucked all the blood out of the chickens. Well, they were killed with the bites to the neck, but they were not drained of their blood. Perhaps being the night before Halloween and all the seasonal tv shows had to do with the vampire vision.
It took a while, but I removed all the chickens that had died from the coop and laid them out to get a photo so I knew which of the flock fell. There were 13. Later, I found the Plymouth Barred Rock chick stuck in a corner on the outside of the coop. I’d found here the mink gained entrance to the coop, but the hole was so small, it could not pull the chick through to the outside. So for all the killing, the mink when out hungry.
I have chicken wire attached to the wall frame, dropping down behind the exterior siding, and extending just under the ground out from the building. Trying to keep critters from digging under the walls. In the corner, this wire overlapped, but the mink was able to get in between the wire layers to gain entrance.
After securing that entry point, and checking around the coop for other possible entrances, I went back and reviewed the recording from the coop cameras. The total was 14 chickens attacked and killed in about 15 minutes. It was incredibly fast in attack speed.
It paused a moment in view of the camera and in a position to clearly show itself and with reference points, I was able to go with a tape measure and determine it to be 25 inches long from nose to tail.