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Hawk Attack-no loss yet

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Mattemma, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Mattemma

    Mattemma Overrun With Chickens

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    Aug 12, 2009
    Well the hawk finally attacked the hens yesterday around 5-6pm.Ofcourse at that exact moment I was at house locking the gate by the driveway.I heard the hens and thought they were just fighting. By the time I got there I saw 3 hens in the corner of the plastic fencing,and the bird netting pushed all the way to the ground.

    My son(8) was yelling that it was the hawk,and that it was sitting on the neighbor's garage night light. After counting all the girls I went over and looked at it.Probably a foot or more tall and quite stocky looking. I yelled but that did not bother it in the least.It was the red shouldered hawk.I have old pics of it on my picasa page.
    http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Red-shouldered_Hawk/lifehistory

    I am glad the netting was loose.Had it been tight I think the hawk would have flew through it.To bad it did not get tangled.I will add more bird netting, and will no longer be walking away from the run to putter around the yard.Poor girls stayed in the shed so I just locked them up for the night.The hawk perches in the huge trees in the neighbors yards that look down on my open yard.

    I know about the laws.I have not forgotten about my neighbors fine,though I still would like to find him and ask about that fine as other neighbors have given a fine range now-$500 to 5k for killing the hawk.Gossip is so annoying.Regardless I have to say when your hens are under attack(and mintues after) all that rational thinking gets muddled by the urge to protect your flock.The neighbors got quite a show if they saw my after the attack. I was all over the yard following that bird.All I could think of was wringing its neck. All the food around and it has to go for my girls. I hope my girls will be OK until I can build a REALLY secure run.

    The run is probably the best option.It stinks that I can not free range them in my fenced acre yard.Even if that specific hawk was gone I am sure another would take its place.And these hawks stay year round.Time to go look at runs and figure out how I can make a covered one for a low cost.

    I hate that hawk.I hate the laws that protect it.So thankful no one was killed or injured.I have 8 hens and each is special to the kids.Glad my ds did not try to fight the hawk!
    Vent over.
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    I have both red-tailed and red-shouldered hawks hunting my pasture and woodlot. Latter has shown no interest in my chickens. The red-shouldered hawk is one likely to be more easily deterred by rooster, I take it you live in community with restrictions?

    I suggest deer netting be used in leiu of bird netting since former a little heavier. Are you certain hawk was targeting your chickens? Red-shouldered hawks in my experience less prone to go after larger game relative to similar sized and sometimes smaller hawks. My brother has pair that nest close to his poultry yard that hunt rodents, snakes and such where chickens range but leave chickens alone.
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2010
  3. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    South Georgia
    I have hawks nesting in some tall trees at the back of my property year round. Not one has ever attacked my chickens. I assume they find enough of their preferred diet --- there are certainly plenty of rabbits, mice, rats, snakes, and probably whatever else thery like around here.

    Not that it doesn't happen; I know it does. I just don't really think a hawk will take a chicken if it can find what it really wants.
     

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