Buff orpington taken by hawk
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Sorry for your loss. The only guarantee of safety is confinement in a covered pen. You are correct, the hawk now regards your yard as a possible buffet. This time of year it may have a nest in the area which would make it a resident rather than a transient.
Don't know the size of your run but you might try stringing colored ribbons across it or putting the disposable aluminum pie plate on ribbons or strings across.
How big was your orpington? That's a big bird for a hawk to carry off.
@ dekel, generally hawks will kill and eat large birds in place. They will continue to return until the carcass is reduced to a size that they can fly off with.
It is common for predators to steal chickens from each other as well as to steal poultry from us humans. A hawk kill will be marked by a pile of small fluffy feathers in a neat circle around the capture sight. Often these down feathers are strewn over several areas because the hawk must pluck the hen before feeding can begin and the chicken is usually alive when feeding commences so there is a long and drawn out struggle. There are many posts on BYC where a partially devoured hen was rescued from the clutches of a hawk and the hen went on to survive her injuries.
Don't assume a hawk absconded with your hen, or it could be that the hawk did the catching and some other varmint did the absconding.
The weight of the victim is not what limits a hawks ability to abscond with a full size adult chicken. The limiting factor is the air resistance of the chicken's useless dead body. A song bird is no challenge to a chicken hawk but an adult full sized hen (or rooster) is another matter. Therefor I must agree with sourland.
Was so upset I couldn't sleep. I was hoping that she had been killed quickly & not the prolonged struggle,agony & trauma, being plucked alive then eaten. There was a round circle of a lot of downy feathers. I searched but nothing else, just gone. She was a favored pet & not some farm chicken. She followed me everywhere & wanted held all the time. Unfortunately I went away for a couple hours & left them to roam. I'm really sick about it. Kate