Hawk attack - safe to eat?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by MrJesse34, Oct 1, 2012.

  1. MrJesse34

    MrJesse34 Out Of The Brooder

    May 27, 2011
    Long Valley
    So I have been free ranging for a month or so, and yesterday I had my first hawk attack. When I went outside, I noticed it was silent and there was no noise or movement anywhere in the yard. Then I see the hawk fly up from the ground to the fence, then off the fence. I walked up to where the hawk was and saw the dead chicken. It had been dead no more than an hour when I found it. I took it down and cleaned it to be eaten. It did not really bleed when I cut the head off. There was really no marks on teh chicken either from the hawk, just a few marks around the butt.

    Question - is it safe to eat this bird? I would think it is fine seeing as how I can say with confidence that the chicken was killed very recently. I couldn't seem to find any info on here regarding this topic.
  2. Mehjr10

    Mehjr10 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 17, 2012
    Moscow, TN
    Sorry for the loss, but I would eat it.
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2012
  3. Nambroth

    Nambroth Fud Lady

    Apr 7, 2011
    Western NY
    My Coop
    Use normal safe meat butchering practices, and you should be totally okay. Since the chicken was deceased and then not butchered immediately, you may want to brine the meat / soak in a saltwater bath for a few hours before preparation just to draw out any blood, but that is a personal flavor preference only and has nothing to do with the safety of the meat (this is what I do for wild game where there is a time gap between death and butchering, seems to help the flavor).

    Sorry for your loss!
  4. MrJesse34

    MrJesse34 Out Of The Brooder

    May 27, 2011
    Long Valley
    Brining the chicken is a great idea actually!! Thanks for the heads up.

    The second chicken that was killed, I didn't really have an idea of when or how long it was dead so I just threw it away. Seems like such a waste but like everyone says, those are the dangers of free ranging.

    I've been considering running some string / rope from tree to tree in my free range area, and then stretching bird mesh over top of it. That way, the free range area has a "cover" of some sort to provide extra protection if they can't get to the covered coop and run in time.

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