Tracks

The 2 front toes are not aligned right next to each other. The inner toe is set further out than the outer toe of the pair.

Droppings/Scant

Often buried under sand or soil, appears in segments and is somewhat blunt on the ends.
Cat map

Kills similar to:

The Cat

Domestic and feral cats are predators of poultry, especially young chicks or small bantam breeds. The way cats kill and eat their prey (your birds) differs depending on the size and age of the bird. If the attack is made on chicks, usually the cat will eat the whole little bird. Cats may (although less likely) kill adult chickens and scatter their body parts around. Young growing birds may only have wings and feathers remaining.

Cats are agile predators with retractable claws, sharp teeth, long whiskers, and have keen hearing and vision (especially at night). Cats usually weigh between 2.5 and 7 kg (5.5 lb). Feral cats differ little in appearance from domestic (pet) cats and display a full range of coat patterns. Cats are usually nocturnal, or active at night. They will get up early in the morning and have a "play time."

Cats will kill their prey through a bite to the back of the neck. Female cats will bring live prey back to young to teach them how to catch it. They will often carry poultry off after a kill, and will kill during both the day and night. It is unlikely that cats will kill larger birds, but may cause some injury in the forms of abrasions in an attempt. Look for footprints.

Note: Cats are known to be carriers of Pasteurella multocida. Any poultry which are wounded by a cat need prompt treatment with antibiotics to prevent fatal septicemia and death.

How to Prevent Cat Attacks

Install Overhead ceiling : Using wire mesh with openings smaller than 2.5 in (6.4 cm).

Frightening

  • Invest in a dog : Ensure its a dog which shows aggression to cats.

References

  1. Prevention and Control of Wildlife Damage. Editors, Scott E. Hygnstrom, Robert M. Timm, Gary E. Larson. 1994. University of Nebraska-Lincoln. 2 vols.
  2. http://www.extension.org/pages/8605/feral-house-cats
  3. http://www.feral.org.au/pestsmart/feral-cats/
  4. http://www.feral.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/PS_Cat_Factsheet.pdf
  5. http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/nreos/wild/pdf/wildlife/FERAL_CATS.PDF
  6. http://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/82598