Cooper Hawk

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Chickens R Us, Aug 21, 2013.

  1. Chickens R Us

    Chickens R Us Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've just had my first loss of a chicken in my flock, I had originally thought it was a raccoon. I leave for work at 5:30 am it is just starting to get light and I let the chickens out of there coops before I go to work. I thought maybe a raccoon could have climbed the fence. What ever it was ripped off the head and ate 1/2 the breast, feathers all over the place. I went back out there today and surveyed the scene of the crime and found a feather that is not from one of my chickens. I looked on the internet and figure it was a Coopers hawk. My run is to big to cover with fence or netting so if anyone has any suggestions for me I would appreciate any advice.
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I do very well against Coopers Hawks using full adult standard size roosters. In your setup, more than one may be better. All bets are off if your "Coopers" turns out to be a Goshawk which does have similar feathers and may be in your neck of woods. If latter, then cover run. I also have dogs but roosters pretty much stop Coopers by themselves.
     
  3. chicknmania

    chicknmania Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Get as many old CDs as you can find and hang them in various places around the coop or wherever the chickens run. Sometimes use one
    sometimes string two or more together. You can decorate them further with pieces of glittery ribbon and we add feathers to ours to make them spin more. The theory is that they disorient the hawks and/ or that they think they are fire. We move ours around in different places every day or so too. You can actually buy glittery stuff to deter hawks but this is cheaper and fun to make your own. Not exactly attractive but who cares they do help a lot. I have also read that you can string fishing line or wire across the top of the coop Personally I think that might cause other problems you don't want, like the hawk getting caught in there...remember that it is illegal to kill them and anyway, they only see dinner, you can't really blame them for preying on the chickens. You can also use wind spinners and we have used wind spinners and added cd's to them sometimes too. Anything that flashes and spins. The worst time of year for predation by hawks is in the late summer and fall when more abundant prey begins to thin out, and some hawks do migrate so they might only temporarily be in your area. But of course, it's best to watch out for them all year long. Roosters help too, they automatically know to watch out for the hawks, and they will sound an alarm to the flock.
     
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    In my setting the rooster actually fights the smaller Coopers Hawk and usually runs hawk off without actually coming to blows.
     
  5. quigley257

    quigley257 Out Of The Brooder

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    I have to chuckle every time I read this. Not trying to be negative but CDs hanging in your yard only accomplish one thing. They make your yard look like a dump. Like "snake repellants", which are completely innefectual(search for real scientific data), they are a waste of time and money and generally bad for the environment. Owl and crow decoys give similar results. Wild birds of prey are not at all put off by shiny objects. If anything, the glitter and movement may actually attract the attention of prey birds and draw them closer to your flock. They are the alpha predators in the woods and when it comes to procuring a meal they are fearless. Cover your run with netting or learn to accept the risks.
     
  6. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I do not know if the CD option works or not. Nor do I advocate their use. You nor I are informed enough to say definitively CD's do not work.
     
  7. animals1981

    animals1981 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    a big tough rooster should be able to chase off a coopers hawk but no rooster can handle a red tail or a goshawk
     
  8. animals1981

    animals1981 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    actually i am not sure it depends where the hawk is during the the attack, but chickens lack that nasty bill that gulls and corvids have so once a hawk has them in its talons they are helpless unless other chickens come and start attacking it

    I always thought game chickens should be able to drive off hawks but its the feet of the bigger hawks once they latch on to a bird like a chicken its hard to escape
     
  9. ChickensAreSweet

    ChickensAreSweet Heavenly Grains for Hens

    I put pallets all around elevated on concrete blocks for the hens to run under if they see a hawk. It does help but a determined hawk could still get them. This picture shows the pallets under another shelter but I have them like this around the pen. Just enough room to squeeze under and hide. They love to dust bathe under them too.
    [​IMG]


    My chickens do stay under them quite a bit. Here is another type of hawk shelter:
    [​IMG]
    One time I had just fenced in an area and let the chickens into it. It had no pallets or shelters of any kind. In five minutes there were FIVE hawks circling overhead. I was sitting in a lawn chair right next to them. I scrambled and moved one of my pallets over for them to hide under and they flew away eventually.
     
  10. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Honestly don't waste your efforts with the cd thing. It may work for a day or two but they soon figure out it is no threat It's like the fake owl to keep pigeons, starlings or other pest birds away. In a few days they are using it to perch on.
    I love every time I go to the Lowes in my town. They have the fake owls in the rafters in the outdoor garden area and the sound effects to go with it. Funny thing is the fake owls are covered in bird poop and sparrows and starling coming and going like they own the place. Not good advertising for the ones they are trying to sell. [​IMG]

    Centrarchid we had a RI red roo and a Barred Rock roo that took on a redtail once. Worked him over good they did. They had him backed into the corner of the run. When he made a move one went in for a flog and when the redtail tried to defend himself the other got him from the other side. That happened about three times. It was a true stand off. Those two rooster dared that hawk to so much as even blink. It went on for at least 10-15 minutes before the hawk finally decided he would risk a take off and manage to get out of the run.
     

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