Taking care of your Chickens:
Sudden Death from Heart Attack
This is uncommon for chickens, but if it does happen, there is nothing you can do. it will not "spread through the flock". There are a few rumors about it. But try to pull yourself together and move on.
In the UK, and many other countries, foxes pose a major threat to chicken stocks. Also, many of the larger birds of prey have been known to attack live chickens.
Known Chicken/Egg Eaters
- Skunks (also eat eggs)
- Weasels and mink (can go into killing frenzy and devastate a flock in a single night)
- Foxes (can take one bird at a time over a long period of time)
- Cats (usually small chicks only)
- Peregrine Falcons
- Magpies and crows (mostly eggs and young chicks)
- In South America there is a type of spider that will prey on chickens
- Oppossum (will eat the head and guts)
Disposal of Bodies (legally) when your chickens die from "unusual" causes
In the UK, there is a legal requirement that you have your birds incinerated by DEFRA. However, this law is usually ignored by small poultry producers. Birds may be buried, incinerated or thrown out with the rubbish. However, if your chicken died of disease then it is imperative that you do not feed it to any other animal, due to the risk of a disease being passed on.
If you want to butcher your own chickens then go to the Butchering Chickens section.