Thursday, January 21, 2010


While I'm not a martial arts expert as the new Sherlock Holmes movie depicts, I've been applying my own powers of deduction to our newest predator.

1) The hole is LARGE with distinct paw prints.

2) Most of the dead chickens had no blood on them. Their necks were broken indicating opposable thumbs.

3) One survived chicken has a single puncture wound on its back that looks like it could have been made by a claw of a deft little hand. Not a tooth or there would be a second nearby.

4)A neighbor saw what she thought was a possum, but was brown, had longer legs, and a stubby pig-like face and a very round belly like a pot-bellied pig.

5)Another neighbor saw a family of racoons leaving the woods beside our house a week or 2 ago.

My thought: it was a jagaurundi (otter cat) and a racoon. The jagaurundi is part of the cat family, is capable of digging holes, kills for sport, etc. This is likely what the neighbor saw. It looked like a pot-bellied pig because it had just had a large chicken dinner. After the jagaurundi dug the hole, killed a few, and had a good meal, the chickens were wandering the yard and a coon or 4 moved in, killed a few more as they were scattered about the yard, injured one's neck, punctured one with a claw and ate a couple more in peace deep in the woods.

The jagaurundi will unfortunately not be made into slippers as they are apparently endangered (or at least 4 of the 8 subspecies are). We'll just continue to protect our birds as we can and hope it finds greener pastures. I've heard of this thing killing a neighbor's rabbits a few years ago. Gee. Endangered yet we can't protect our livestock from it.

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