hawk found our chickens!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by adbayer, Oct 22, 2010.

  1. adbayer

    adbayer Out Of The Brooder

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    help! this morning DH and i were sleeping in(oops!) and had left the girls gate open last night so that they could free range all morning... we were awoken by them making a horrible ruckus- and looked out the window to see a small hawk perched on the door to the coop. the big girls were all hollering... we rushed out there and he flew away. we thought we were missing out 3 teenager EE, but one was hiding under the waterer stand, and two more emerged slowly from the depths of my tomato plants:) everyone appears uninjured and okay, just frazzled.
    i have two hens with some ROUGH tail feathers, but i dont know if it was him, or we are beginning to molt because of the season change. . . . he was very small, and our teen's were just barely smaller than him.. so i dont think he could have carried anyone off, but he could have hurt them badly. . . .

    we live in town, so its very weird!!! what can we do so that they can still go out without them being hunted by him!!! i need hawk advice please!!!

    my mom suggested a plastic owl, we will def get one of those when we head to the city on tuesday... but what else?

    any hawk knowlege would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. S*T*A*R

    S*T*A*R Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't have any hawk knowledge for you, but i'm glad all your gals are ok! [​IMG]
     
  3. WhiteMountainsRanch

    WhiteMountainsRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've heard that stringing fishing line and cd's across the yard and trees will deter hawks, but I have no experience. Hopefully someone will chime in that does...
     
  4. adbayer

    adbayer Out Of The Brooder

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    alas, we have no trees. we planted a red maple in our back yard a few months ago, but its just a stick with leaves at the moment, lol. . .
     
  5. Gallo del Cielo

    Gallo del Cielo La Gallina Resort & Spa

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    Planting cover will certainly help. Decoys won't though. In fact, you standing there waving your arms and yelling at it won't deter it if it has a shot and wants to take it. Hawks are also common in cities. Just be vigilant and look at other threads here in P&P on what some have done to prevent them from swooping in for attack (Fishing line and shiny things).
     
  6. corliss

    corliss Out Of The Brooder

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    For what it's worth, we are in the process of stringing 50 lb fishing line from Walmart about 20 high from our house to the wooded slope opposite to prevent hawk attacks. We had a merlin come in the yard last week and swoop down on a hen but luckily our presence seemed to deter it. I was thinking about using bird netting but everyone on here said it comes down with the weight of leaves and/or snow. I've put 6 lines of line up so far and I really like how you can't even see it except if you look closely, plus it is so high up that we won't snag it with anything by accident.
     
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Scare crows (cd's, balloon owls, balloon eyes, etc.) effective only for shortest amount of time. Therefore ineffective.

    Fishing line / bailing twine can work but not been practical in my experience. So much material and time required. Can look tacky as well.

    Denying hawks access to poultry by keeping latter confined except when you are present and vigilant can be used. Takes time. You need to be prepared to run over immediately to run hawk off. Do not allow it to bluff you if it does not want release your bird. Kick at hawk if needed to get it off your bird (dealt with persistant young red-tailed hawk in this manner once).

    Providing cover increases odds poultry can evade capture. Bushes and like can be helpful. I understand netting can be used as elevated sheets placed in strategic locations so poultry can run under it when raptors visit.

    Roosters, if proper cover present that forces hawk to work from ground and not be able to fly readily with quarry, can be a deterrent as many roosters will harass hawk on ground. Do not expect bantams or other smaller breeds to do this successfully. My games (as full adults) do so readily but other breeds I am not so sure of in terms of their consistency in respect to harassing hawks. Even my games will run if hawk gets above them.

    Dog likely to be best bet. Sometimes just sight of dog will keep hawk away. A dog that responds to chicken alarm calls even better. As indicated humans not good deterants for hawks but any ground predator bigger than hawk is very effective.
     
  8. bturbo87

    bturbo87 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Roosters, if proper cover present that forces hawk to work from ground and not be able to fly readily with quarry, can be a deterrent as many roosters will harass hawk on ground. Do not expect bantams or other smaller breeds to do this successfully. My games (as full adults) do so readily but other breeds I am not so sure of in terms of their consistency in respect to harassing hawks. Even my games will run if hawk gets above them.

    we had a hawk attack just the other day, my five full grown (ranging from 28-35 inch) roos ran into the coop while my 8 in G. Seabright hopped around chasing and jumping at the hawk till it was run off, by the time i made it outside there was a pile of feathers and overly proud seabright.​
     
  9. knjinnm

    knjinnm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Hi All,
    Several years ago I used fishing line zig-zaged across my ten foot wide garden to keep crows out, worked very well so I assume it would deter hawks as well.
    Good luck:)
     
  10. adbayer

    adbayer Out Of The Brooder

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    thank you for your replies!!!!! we have a miniature pinscher, and a mini australian shepherd(both rescues), and our min pin... if we could get him to be protective of the chickens instead of wanting to eat them would be a GREAT hawk dog, but i dont think thats gonna work, lol. . our aussie is just a pup, so we are still training her with the chickens. she wants to play, [​IMG] .

    thank you for all your suggestions (and keep them coming please!!!) i will def sift through the p&p pages. im liking the fishing wire suggestions.... does it need to be colored? or can it be clear?
     

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