I saw the culprit - an owl just killed one of my turkeys!!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by lengel, Jul 31, 2008.

  1. lengel

    lengel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The culprit of this night's attack was an owl - and it killed a turkey! The turkeys (now over ten pounds each) were in a separate enclosure from the chickens. There was a narrow gap in the covering over the top. We were so tired from rebuilding the chicken enclosure that we decided to leave it. Half hour ago the dogs went off and I shot out the door. There was this owl and my smallest turkey dead. But the owl couldn't figure out how to leave. It managed to find the entrance but couldn't find it to get away.

    I put the remaining three in the chicken day run and peeled back the covering of the turkey enclosure enough so that the owl could get out. I'm convinced that the first attack with the beheaded chicken was a fisher cat but the last two attacks were definitely this owl. It seems to break the necks of the birds and leaves a huge bloody bare spot. Explains why we haven't caught anything in the Havaharts. Also explains why I haven't seen any rodents lately.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2008
  2. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Lengel,
    Thanks so much for letting the owl out. Its just doing what mother nature tells it to do, feed its young, and itself. I am so very sorry you lost a little turkey tho. Its hard loseing any of our livestock/pets.
     
  3. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

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    Sorry about your turkey. Owls will get into small openings for sure, which explains why the neck was hit too. Usually they swoop down and grab the body with those talons and puncture the animal.
     
  4. lengel

    lengel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm glad that we have something around that helps keep the rodent population under control. I'm confused though as to why an owl would go after a turkey. The turkey was three times the size of this thing. What is going on here? Did it think it was going to fly off with a turkey??
     
  5. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    lengel wrote: The turkey was three times the size of this thing. What is going on here? Did it think it was going to fly off with a turkey??

    Sorry about your turk.
    Do you know what kind of owl it was (besides brazen, that is).

    We are overloaded with Barred Owls here and they often get moving while I can still distinguish a white from a black thread. They've never even given the chooks and turks a second look.​
     
  6. flakey chick

    flakey chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 3, 2007
    Florida
    Wow, what kind of owl was that? We had a wussy pair of screech owls. They let a family of squirrels kick them out of the house we put up for them. How sad is that?
     
  7. lengel

    lengel Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Looked at the pics on the internet and I think it's a great horned owl. This one looked mature so probably 3-4 pounds. Since it didn't spook easily, I got a really good look at it. Turns out that it's the second most common owl in Mass. I need to do some more research on how much this thing would consume. I have seen so few rodents and snakes this year but I had no idea why. It must be hungry.
     
  8. luvmychicknkids

    luvmychicknkids Canning Squirrel

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    Wow....I always just assumed an owl wouldn't get them unless it was wide open...I had no idea they would go in an enclosed space to catch one. I will have to keep that in mind. We have a pair here that I could sit and listen to for hours. I have never managed to see them though.
     
  9. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    Yikes! Have read GHO's sometimes grab up dogs and cats. Best of luck on the overhead defenses! (thankful for only mid-sized owl species overhead here).

    ed: to make sense [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2008
  10. birdy_num_nums

    birdy_num_nums Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm so sorry about your recent losses [​IMG]

    Thank you for posting that the owl got in through the small opening. I am finishing up my chicken run and was thinking of taking a short cut in only putting up strips of netting over the top instead of solid- now that I know GHO will still go in, I know to cover the whole top. We have some here and they are so comforting to me at night to hear them on my roof hooting. I like to picture them swooping down and ridding my yard of rodents.

    And thank you for letting the owl go. [​IMG]
     

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