Thursday night, I somehow forgot to lock up the last two of the new Gangsta Girls. I knew this Friday morning when I went to let them out for the day, and found one already wandering around, acting a bit lost. I knew, with sickening certainty, what I would find when I went into the barn, and I was right. A massive feather explosion in the unlocked coop and a trail leading out the big barn door almost all the way to Dawson Road. I picked up some bait from the trail, and added it to the untouched trap. Even a wary predator has a hard time resisting leftovers, and I was bound and determined to end this ones career ASAP. And I needed another weapon in the war. It wasn't hard to talk Dale into a trip to Cabelas to pick up a trail, or game camera. We chose a Cabelas Outfitter 8mb Black LED model, one that doesn't have a visible flash, and set it up Friday night when I locked the lone hen up for the night.
The results were amazing. Apparently, our barn at night is Party Central for critters. There were a lot of pictures of Bad Cat making his rounds, and then, a cat I didn't recognize. And then, most telling of all, was the first shots you see below. The first 'coon to avoid the trap since we started using it. I'm guessing that he has been coming by for the past few weeks, hoping to score another free (for him) meal and got lucky on Thursday.
We've got his number now, and Dale found some helpful hints to use to bait the trap to be extra attractive to 'coons and less so to the cats, altho I'd like to catch the odd cat as well. Coon first, they do the most damage, and then deal with the cat.
If the 'coon continues to avoid trapping, there are other methods that he won't be able to avoid
The locked coop is to the right, the camera faces the trap and the back of the barn (south end)
The strange cat
Bad Cat greets the last hen this morning
Bad Cat making his rounds at 0344 this morning