Posted 07-19-2004 at 10:34:11
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Assuming you are setting your trap and these incidents occur at night, you'll want to look at the nocturnal predators.
Cats, owls, coons, coyotes, etc. I don't think a bobcat can scale a 6ft stockade fence with a chicken in its mouth. Seems a little to much for those scrappy little cats. A cougar (mountain lion, panther, depends on what you call them in your neck of the woods) could easily get over that fence but you would probably see paw prints around. A cougar print looks similar to a large dog print with one exception: Three pads on the rear of the paw rather than one on a dog. If you can see the three indentations in the print, you gotta big cat problem. Not sure where you are from so I don't know about the coyote/wolf factor. Probably doesn't matter though, I dont think you'll see either one scaling that tall of a fence. Owls are certainly a possibility. That could explain the feathers on the top of the fence too. I am not sure if you've ever seen an owl after prey but it is quite a site to see. Especially if the prey is hard for the owl to catch. They just don't give up easily. They'll swoop back and forth perching on anything to get a good chance to snag whatever is on the ground.
You have to figure out what it is before you can really decide what to do about it.
Happy shooting ;^)