Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Stoat or small ferret?  (Read 279 times)

Richmond

  • Joined Sep 2020
  • Norfolk
Stoat or small ferret?
« on: June 18, 2022, 08:22:29 am »
Is anyone on here a mustelid expert? I have encountered something "stoaty" this morning coming from one of my chicken enclosures. It looked at me for a few seconds then disappeared into a large rubble pile we have nearby.
No black tip to the tail, and blonde/buff in colour, about the size of a rat. Tail was fairly short - maybe 2-3 inches. Think it was too large to be a weasel. And whatever it is, is it likely to steal eggs or will it just eat meat (mice and voles etc)? I have heard the chickens kicking off lately, seemingly at random but they can do that for all sorts of reasons - often when I investigate I discover one of the cats lurking nearby :)

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Stoat or small ferret?
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2022, 11:38:15 am »
If it gets into the chicken house (and they just wander in during the day and then wait ...)  your hens may all be killed during the night... I don't want to worry you, but I have had a small stoat/weasel kill a house full of hens overnight twice - and then shoot out when I open up in the morning... (in about 15 years of hen keeping). But there isn't much you can do... If your cat patrols the area around the chicken enclosure that may well deter a stoat/weasel.




Richmond

  • Joined Sep 2020
  • Norfolk
Re: Stoat or small ferret?
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2022, 12:06:25 pm »
Gosh I hope it won't kill adult hens. I do have some young chicks/growers in a coop and run nearby, and also turkey poults a little further away, both of which I know would be tempting to a stoat.
It was the colour of the thing that confused me really. I wouldn't have said albino, as not "white" enough - more of a buff colour - but maybe it was a bit dirty!

harmony

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Stoat or small ferret?
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2022, 12:26:51 pm »
No black tip to tail then weasel not stoat. Weasel, stoat or ferret I would be worried especially about young chicks and poults. All ferocious killers and will kill more than they can eat..

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Stoat or small ferret?
« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2022, 09:40:33 am »
No black tip to tail then weasel not stoat. Weasel, stoat or ferret I would be worried especially about young chicks and poults. All ferocious killers and will kill more than they can eat..


and the ones not killed do die of shock....

Richmond

  • Joined Sep 2020
  • Norfolk
Re: Stoat or small ferret?
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2022, 08:26:54 am »
Well I haven't seen it again. For all I know it may have been around for ages and it was a chance sighting on Saturday. I'm going to mow the enclosures today as the grass is now getting too long - the hens will enjoy the shorter grass and there will be fewer hiding places for any critters with evil intent.

 

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