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Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by lindaluvsherchicks, May 1, 2011.

  1. lindaluvsherchicks

    lindaluvsherchicks Hatching

    May 1, 2011
    Hi everyone!I wanted to get some advice if I could. I added a smiley face, but I'm not very happy. We've been letting our chickens and guineas free range for almost 3 yrs with no problems except a cat wandered in one day and killed one of my favorite hens. We kept them locked up after that for a few days until we caught it. Well that was a year ago. Now all of a sudden we have quite a few hawks. We didn't know what was getting our hens , they got five of them out of our 15. We kept them locked up for a few days and the guineas were going nuts, (I think they must have had nests) and the hawks hadn't been around so I let them out one morning about a week ago. Well that was the stupidest thing I could have ever done! They got my very best pet hen and my beautiful rooster! I am just sick about it and can't stop thinking about it. Well I know no one can help me with my extreme guilt but my question is,should we try to figure a way to let the guineas out? They are going nuts, the chickens don't seem to mind being cooped up. We have a small enclosed place connected to their coop. and are in the process of maker it about another size bigger, But the guineas don't seem to be adapting well. Is it cruel to keep them locked up? Which is crueler? Locking them up or letting the hawks get them? Please help me decide I am so frustrated!

  2. schellie69

    schellie69 Songster

    Oct 8, 2009
    First [​IMG] I am sorry you joined with such a bad problem I don't have guineas so I can't help. I would keep them locked up do they have any where to hide like bushes places low if someone says that their is a hawk. I don't know anything but a covered run or tractor. hopefully someone with more knowledge will post.
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Welcome to BYC. I'm sorry for your losses. I lost a big Barred Rock hen to a hawk earlier this year, it hurts. Some people hang old CD discs from trees in their yard, strips of reflective materials, fake owls etc...they have stated that all these deterents have worked but I've never tried any of it. My solution was to get a rooster that I didnt have at the time. More importantly, mine free range under supervision. If we've got to go somewhere, they all go in lockdown in their pen til we get back. I've never owned guineas. While they are penned, is it possible you could hang a head of cabbage in their pen to keep them distracted or something like that? Hanging a head of cabbage has worked well with my chickens. Good luck.
  4. Cacciatore

    Cacciatore Songster

    Jan 19, 2011
    San Pablo, CA
    Welcome from Northern California. [​IMG] I'm sorry for your losses. I live in a flyway of migrating hawks but I've only lost one chicken to them. My chickens run free but I keep the area cluttered with things they can quickly get under.
  5. MSDeb

    MSDeb Songster

    Welcome to BYC, glad you decided to join us. Good luck with your birds. We have hawks here and our solution has been to only let the birds free range when we are home and can keep an eye on them. They are in their covered pen when we are not home. Overhead bird netting works pretty well.
  6. 4-H chicken mom

    4-H chicken mom Crowing

    Aug 3, 2007
    Oberlin, OH
    [​IMG] and [​IMG] from Ohio. So glad you joined. Sorry for your losses. I to have lost chickens to hawks. It is never easy. [​IMG]
  7. La Mike

    La Mike (Always Slightly Off)

    Nov 20, 2009
    [​IMG] from Louisiana.

    Best thing to do is try and let them free range when you can be there to watch over them [​IMG]

  8. mamawolf544

    mamawolf544 Unbreakable Heart

    Apr 29, 2009
    alvarado, Tx
    [​IMG] from Texas.

    I let mine free range but they have places to go hide when the warning screech comes up. Good luck.
  9. lindaluvsherchicks

    lindaluvsherchicks Hatching

    May 1, 2011
    Quote:Thanks schellie69for the welcome. Yes we have a lot of bushes they can hide in, they are faster than the chickens. I guess that's why they hadn't got caught. After we got our chicken house ready, a friend gave us 11 guinea babes and 10 baby chicks. Hers all lived together so I thought it would be perfect to house them together. Only problem is the chickens go in before dark and we have to get the guineas in every night after dark. I always worried about something getting in the coop before all the guineas get in.
  10. lindaluvsherchicks

    lindaluvsherchicks Hatching

    May 1, 2011
    Quote:Thanks dawg53, it really does hurt. They are such beautiful birds and we get wonderful eggs and it makes me feel like I didn't protect them. we've had them for 3 years and never had a problem, but now everything's changed. I will take your advice and not let them out except when we are home. I will try the things you have suggested . Thanks so much!

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