Can anyone explain the chicken behavior I describe in this post?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by wordsdeeds, Jul 31, 2011.

  1. mulewagon

    mulewagon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It sounds like they spotted a hawk, or a shadow that reminded them of one. Especially since the other birds were quiet, too. Chickens run from most things, but freeze when a shadow passes over.
     
  2. hcppam

    hcppam Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:x2
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  3. wordsdeeds

    wordsdeeds New Egg

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    Jul 31, 2011
    Very good to know. It makes sense to me. But I still can't figure out the profound stillness that fell over everything.
    Thanks, mulewagon.
     
  4. wordsdeeds

    wordsdeeds New Egg

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    Jul 31, 2011
    Perhaps there be dragons...
     
  5. sheila3935

    sheila3935 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had a day like that last Sunday. We lost a cockrel to te heat earlier in the day. I went out late afternoon to check on them and as I sat out there watching them and looking in the bantam run not to see little Forrest bopping aound a silent tear fell. All of the sudden all of the chickens that were out ranging walked over to the bantam run and lined up along the run looking in. Everything got quiet. No birds peeping no bug noises no chickens clucking just standing there looking in. After a few minutes they all filed away and the sounds started.
     
  6. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

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    One of them or all of them saw a hawk, owl or eagle.

    My birds once acted like this when a helicopter flew over head.....
     
  7. chikindawg

    chikindawg New Egg

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    My rooster will look into an area in the barn and make a cooing/gurgling sound. I was wondering if this is something a rooster does to let the hens know that this is a good place to lay an egg. Any thoughts, please?
     
  8. 6chickens in St. Charles

    6chickens in St. Charles Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:If you follow the line of sight from the chickens' looking up eye, you'll see it. They are very good at staring their predator out. Must harken back to the day when they relied upon a shepherd or a shepherd dog to protect them.

    Then, when the predator actually makes an attack or a swooping attempt, you'll hear the honking car alarm sound of the rooster, but when the predator is sighted by the chickens, they just look straight at it with one eye while they stay perfectly still.
     
  9. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    The profound stillness a typical response immediately following detection of overhead threat. Everybody sits quite and stops making noises to avoid detection by predator. If threat a bird eating hawk (i.e. Coopers), then it will be looking for movement and listening for chatter during hunt. When Coopers buzz my yard all birds hush, unless hawk is low and approaches a nest, then some bird species will mob it. The birds seem to know when a hawk is prone to give a prolonged chase and make every effort to avoid its starting. I have seen prolonged chases on various blackbird species (starlings, redwinged blackbirds, Brewer's blackbirds, common grackles) and hawk usually catches a meal which is very big nightmare for potential targets.
     

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