First loss to predator

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by featherfooted, Sep 2, 2009.

  1. featherfooted

    featherfooted Chillin' With My Peeps

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    After lunch I went out to put clean water in the pool for the ducks and decided to check for eggs. As I went to the coop I noticed there seemed to be a smaller number of my buff orpington chicks than there should be. I counted and only found 6 of the 9(later found one hiding under the ramp). I then saw one dead next to the coop. The chicks are in a smaller pen inside the big pen. I put the rest of them and their silkie mom in the coop. After removing the dead chick I saw only a few places that were bloody, on top of the head and around the legs. I looked closer and found what looked like intestines and a lot of buff feathers. What ever killed them ate one. My guess is a hawk even through I've never seen any around our house. What do you think? My coop is inside a chainlink fenced backyard of about 3/4 acre with other fenced in yard around it. I don't see any other animal making it to the coop in the daylight without Lady, our setter, getting it first. She pretty good at keeping other animals out.
     
  2. MIKE555444

    MIKE555444 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 8, 2009
    Pliny, West Virgina
    Not sure what.... but I think a hawk would normally cary off its prey
     
  3. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Quote:Not always. Sometimes they rip their prey apart on the spot and chow down. I witnessed a hawk attack on a songbird where the hawk just shredded that poor bird where it stood and ate it. I was standing in a window inside my house, but the hawk could see me and kept giving me the hairy eyeball. It didn't stop him from devouring his meal, though.
     
  4. featherfooted

    featherfooted Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Could crows have killed and eaten the chicks?
     
  5. CMV

    CMV Flock Mistress

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    Quote:Yes. Several people here have lost small chicks to crows.
     
  6. bigchickenman

    bigchickenman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2009
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    I just lost two chickens to a hawk and he set right in my chicken lot and eat them ,so they don't always carry them away.I hate to hear of your loss.
     
  7. suevit

    suevit Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 10, 2009
    I too have lost 2 6wk old chicks to a hawk. It ended up inside the coup after killing one in the yard and my husband found it tearing up another in the coup. It had to walk through a caged small pen and in the small door where it proceeded to commence on it's meal...
     
  8. Elchick

    Elchick Out Of The Brooder

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    May 28, 2008
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    Yes, hawks often will just kill and eat on the spot. Once I watched an enormous hawk swoop down on my Rhode Island red, rip open her stomach, and begin to devour the intestines in a matter of minutes right in my backyard, before I even had time to get a bat.
     
  9. featherfooted

    featherfooted Chillin' With My Peeps

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    These chicks were 4 weeks old and about 6" tall. What ever it was came back this morning as everything was in hiding for a while. A friend of mine said that there is a small hawk around here they call a blue darter that could have done it. She said that it's very fast. From what I can find on the internet blue darter is an old name for a Cooper's Hawk. I guess I need to find a way to cover the run. I really hate to not let them free range they love it so much.
     
  10. gsim

    gsim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 18, 2009
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    You can buy bird netting that is used to protect crops such as strawberries. Another thing is to string polypropylene twine all about overhead so that they cannot swoop in and out. I am going to try that first since my pen is so large. You can buy it at your co-op or at tractor supply stores. I have a large crow population here so they keep the hawks and owls away pretty well.
     

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