Another Small Hawk

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Oregon Blues, Oct 18, 2011.

  1. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Crowing

    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    I've had another small hawk visitor, in addition to the Kestrel. He's come for the sparrows and more power to him.

    I have been unable to identify him. The hawk is larger than the Kestrel, but still on the small side. No threat to the poultry at that size. I wish I could have gotten a photo of him. I am mystified about what type of hawk he is.

    Small, trim build, really uniformly medium brown. Solid brown head and the feathers on his head were extra long and a little bit poofy, making him look like his head was shaggy. Definitely a hawk body shape and hooked bill.

    Does that ring a bell with anyone? I haven't had any luck searching the internet for anything that looks like him. I don't know whether he is a hawk or a falcon.
  2. greenegglover

    greenegglover Songster

    Aug 14, 2009
    What you may have is a shin spurred hawk. They are about half the size of a chicken, like to hunt from the trees. They will kill a chicken and eat it where they drop it! Secure your chickens. I had to put avian netting over my enitire run due to one of those. They are relentless!!! Secure Secure Secure.....thats my SSS. Hawks are protected!!!
  3. wayne hulgan

    wayne hulgan Chirping

    Jul 24, 2011
    Quote:Could be a Merlin, they are very much like Kestrel's only slightly larger. Don't think they would be a danger to chicks, but if its a Sharp-shinned Hawk,
    they may try for one of your chicks. Oh by the way, Itunes has an app, kinda expensive $9 bucks, its called Ibird. great for identifing birds. works with Iphone, or Ipod Touch, don't know bout the Ipad.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Juvenile sharp-shinned most like your description. Risk to even young chickens is minimal.
  5. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Songster

    Aug 4, 2010
    San Diego
    There's a book in the library called Sibley's guide to birds. Try one for the western region if you can. Merlin and sharp-shinned are good guesses. Chicks are always vulnerable to anything that eats small animals.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011
  6. Bill A

    Bill A In the Brooder

    Sep 12, 2011
    Unlikely a Merlin. Most likely a sharp-shinned or a Cooper's. The latter are accipiters and make their living eating birds. They can be quite bold and fearless, and I wouldn't trust 'em around chickens for a minute.

  7. TheSpiceGirls

    TheSpiceGirls Crowing

    Oct 6, 2010
    Bay Area, CA
    Could be a Coopers Hawk or a Sharp-shinned. I have trouble telling those two apart.

    We get the Coopers in our yard and they WILL go after a chicken despite their small size. They are also called chicken hawks. They won't be able to carry it off but they will kill it and eat it there. So regardless of what it is, I would exercise caution and do what you can to protect your flock.
  8. SilkieBantams

    SilkieBantams Songster

    Sep 23, 2011
    Houston, TX
    Possibly it's a falcon or a Gyrofalcon?
  9. Frannabelle

    Frannabelle Songster

    Jun 1, 2009
    I have a Merlin that hunts my yard here in Michigan, sounds like my guy
  10. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Gotta watch those gyrofalcons. [​IMG] From your description it sounds like a merlin or sharp shin. Merlin are more stubby and squat wheras sharp shin hawks have a longer tail and look like a smaller model of the Cooper's hawk.

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