Thief in the night

We have had a thief in the night. I believe a raccoon has the belief that we should supply him with nightly meals. It has killed 2 chickens and has been cleaning out the dog and cat feed in the horse barn. We suspected something last week but it is now confirmed.

We found one of our hens killed in the coop this week. The darn raccoon was climbing up pipe fence to the metal roof in order to climb in a vent. In all of our efforts to secure the coop, the little thief found the one weak point.  We never expected anything to come up from the fence. Due to the dew on the grass and a few dirt patches we were able to track its movements along the fence and onto the roof..

In the barn, we have been putting our bags of feed into an animal carrier to secure them at night. The raccoon has been reaching in and trying to pull the bag through the door grate. In doing so, it has been pulling about 25 lbs.  around the floor. That feat has matched the size of foot prints found on the fence. We are dealing with at least one adult maybe more.

I am reluctant to deal with the situation with a gun. I feel the power of any gun that I have will be too much around the buildings and other animals. I really don’t want to wake up the neighbors, or draw suspicion to our farm. I have too many cats to use any trap including a live trap. And I really don’t think he will leave just by asking . So, I have purchased an air rifle to use to deal with our thief. Now the hunter becomes the hunted. Tonight I will be ready. I am on farm protection duty!