Do crows prey on chickens?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by LindaN, Aug 1, 2007.

  1. LindaN

    LindaN Songster

    Jul 28, 2007
    I'm still awaiting my pullets (only a couple more weeks to go!) and reading through these message boards has been quite an education to me!

    I plan to keep my chickens in their Eglu and attached run when I can't supervise them, but let them out to "free range" the back yard when I can keep a close eye on them.

    My back yard is fenced and they would only be out during the day, so the four-legged predators shouldn't be much of a problem. However, I hadn't thought about predators that can fly.

    Here in the city we do have some raptors, mostly peregrine falcons introduced to prey on the plentiful pigeons. The peregrines aren't in my area, and I've never seen any other type of raptor nearby.

    But we do have some pretty big crows in my neighborhood. Do crows prey on chickens? I know they eat small rodents (yay!) and snakes (not so happy about them eating the garter snakes).

    I sure hope they don't bother chickens. Crows and blue jays just came back this year after being knocked out from the West Nile virus a couple years ago and I really missed them.

    Maybe once I get the chickens introduced to our two dogs as new "pack members" the dogs would protect them from predators from the skies as well as keeping the four-legged predators out? The dogs do chase the pigeons away from the bird feeder...
  2. skatcatla

    skatcatla Songster

    Jun 26, 2007
    Crows are usually scavengers, so I don't think you need to worry about predation, but I would be concerned about hawks and falcons. We've had hawks here that carried off small dogs right in front of their owner.
  3. Backyard Buddies

    Backyard Buddies Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    I have seen a crow eat a bird, but it was a little baby sparrow just learning how to fly. It was a sad thing watching those little babies hatch only to be eaten by a crow. Sigh. But, to answer your question, I think that once a chicken is large enough, I don't think a crow will be a danger to it.
  4. chickenwoods

    chickenwoods Songster

    Apr 29, 2007
    No,crows wont bother your chickens(shouldn't) I have seen crows all over around my chickens and they never botherd my chickens. I dont think crows are really hunters,they are kinda like buzzards sort of.They only find things that are already dead.They dont like working for there food LOL:D
  5. 6chix

    6chix Songster

    Jul 24, 2007
    Western Ma
    Actually crows will kill and eat small chicks. I lost my first 10 chicks to crows. They were 3 weeks old and I had them in a box on my deck. I went inside to answer the phone when I came out 5 min later I saw a crow flying off with a chick in its mouth, the other 9 chicks had also been killed:(
  6. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    The only time I see crows here is when they are making a ruckus about a hawk. I wouldn't worry about a crow getting your adult birds. Although I do hear city animals are notorious for cruel behavior. Like city coons eating pet's and city squirrels sneaking into buildings to eat food off peoples kitchens.
  7. chickbea

    chickbea Songster

    Jan 18, 2007
    Crows will eat baby chicks, but generally momma hen is close enough to put a stop to it.
  8. Rooster01

    Rooster01 Songster

    Feb 25, 2007
    Southern WV
    Crows won't attack you hens. They aren't big enough to take a chicken down. They may bother one if its injured, but I doubt it.
  9. LindaN

    LindaN Songster

    Jul 28, 2007
    Thanks to all for the reassurance!

    In past years I've found evidence that the crows go after mice and garter snakes (a fresh carcass in your driveway that seems to suddenly "appear" and then "disappear" a few minutes later when you return to the same spot is usually a clue) which are certainly smaller than a chicken. But one never knows...
  10. EboyDog

    EboyDog In the Brooder

    Jul 15, 2007
    Hallsville MO
    Crows will scare the chickens!! [​IMG]

    Yesterday I was watching my guys tearing up the crickets and bugs were I had mowed down thick weed/grass infected area (there were thousands of bugs!!) when off in the distance at the end of the pasture, flock of crows suddenly started cawing and carrying on....

    First I saw my RIR roo perk up and look then he took off for the nearby tall okra forest in the garden only to be following by all his hens in quickly as possible!

    They stayed in the protective area of the okra for about 20 minutes until my roo got brave enough and started peeking out, mind you the crows were no were to be seen, they were in the woods way off yet just the noise of them set the chickens off as they knew if was not normal!

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