Weasel (Warning, dead animal photos)

So this morning Tom went to check on the chicks.  They were fine at bedtime, but this morning there was a bloodbath and a weasel dancing on the chick warmer.  He tried to hit it with a box to no avail.  So he ran to the house to get his gun.  We ran back to the barn, and I saw the weasel carrying a chick in its mouth heading out of the barn.  I tried to chase it, but it ran under the fence.  Then Tom saw it running back to the chick pen.  He was able to shoot it in the head just as it reached the pen.  The photo above is the dead chicks the weasel left behind, and the photo below is of the dead weasel.

We have been here 15 years and never had a weasel issues.  We have raised chicks in that same pen for years.  But this was definitely our problem this year.  I feel sick putting more chicks in there just to die.  The netting I put up did slow the weasel down, but he/she still found a way.  There are 9 surviving chicks out of the 24 we bought yesterday.  Here they are.

We put them in box on the pellet stove while we figured out a solution.

Tom prepared one of our rabbit hutches for the chicks, making sure that it is nice and secure.  Here they are in their new home.

I had to leave for medical appointments while Tom dealt with everything.  In addition, Indy is still not looking good, and Maddie has scours.  So he called the vet out again.  He thinks Indy has mastitis and gave her antibiotics, pain killer and vitamins.  Maddie got antibiotics.  He drenched Indy with electrolyte solution but back at the office he ran her blood, and her calcium and magnesium levels were normal.  So hopefully the antibiotics will help her feel better.  She lets you pet her now, completely abnormal.

Between my appointments I stopped by a pet store to get supplies for my aquariums and saw this.

I had to buy Steve a weasel toy.  Hopefully this will help teach him to hunt them.

7 Fierce Facts About Weasels

 

 

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12 Responses to Weasel (Warning, dead animal photos)

  1. That’s not a bad idea to get Steve to hunt them. You should take the toy and rub it all over the real one so he associates the smell.

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  2. Denise says:

    geez oh man- the hits just keep on coming, eh? So sorry about the chicks. at least you got the weasel (though I’m sure there is more than one). really hope that Indy responds to the antibiotics and starts to feel better soon.

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  3. Michelle says:

    That’s a very foxy weasel! 😉

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  4. mcfwriter says:

    When I first got chickens, back in the early 1980s, we had mink come in and kill adult birds. It was really upsetting, and we killed a few of the mink (which I feel bad about now). We made sure to use 1-inch mesh chicken wire and buried it so they couldn’t dig under.. The positive side of mink and weasel is that they will prey on the mice and rat population.
    Sorry about your chicks. I know how upsetting that massacre must have been to see. The prey drive is so strong and they are triggered again and again, and our domestic stock is so vulnerable.
    Maureen

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    • Donna says:

      Thanks Maureen! I feel horrible putting them in harm’s way. Hopefully we will get a weasel-proof pen and the weasels can go back to eating rodents.

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  5. Jeanne says:

    Oh Donna! I’m so sorry! I have to admit, I never once thought of weasels! Must have terrified those poor little chicks! Your rabbit hutch should be safe for them.

    It must seem really strange that Indy will let you pet her! I hope that what the vet did will do the trick. And for Maddie Moo too! You’ve had enough trouble!

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    • Donna says:

      Thanks Jeanne! I feel stupid not thinking if weasels and did not know they can climb up walls like that. It must have been terrifying for them. So far the hutch is working and we have some hardware cloth that should do the trick
      Being able just to walk up to Indy much less pet her is scary. Tom says both her and Maddie were much better yesterday while I was at work. I will get to see them soon to see for myself.

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  6. Chickens says:

    I had a similar experience with fire ants getting to ALL my chicks in one night! I hope the rest made it to be big healthy hens!

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