Life with Murphy's Law - this time in the Hawk Department

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by jjthink, Apr 9, 2008.

  1. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

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    A pair of red tailed hawks has decided not just to visit but to MOVE IN. To list as their residence my address. They have a great big nest at least 100 feet up in one of my trees (I'm only on a residential lot so the hawk parents are right here - up close and personal - hanging out on or or another of the branches of my trees).

    BJ roo and hen Annie are used to free ranging and she loses her ever loving mind by 8:30 a.m. if I still have them in their covered run (they are safe there but get bored senseless after 10 minutes - it's only 8' x 30'). Annie could not be more oblivious and when out free ranging eagerly walks straight to the middle of the lawn area, where she is an easy target.. And the crows - the crows are not attacking the hawks, yelling at them, chasing them - nothing - nothing. They sit on brnaches right near them. It's like they are totally and peacefully coexisting. I work - a lot - and supervising BJ and Annie for free range time is sadly not possible in ample enough measure.

    The hawk parents haven't spent much time by the nest - they fly briefly back and forth to it - so I don't know if there are little ones yet, but probably soon. So now I figure I'm in for at least several weeks of baby raising followed by mom and dad teaching hunting!. This is just going to get better and better. If I didn't have chickens it would be exciting to have hawks nesting but since I do I am nothing but a worried wreck. (I'm hoping they will leave my cats alone).

    I have one of those fake owls that I move around but it seems to matter not. The hawks are probably saying "Look at that silly human moving that plastic owl around - how dumb does she think we are?".

    Does anyone have any experience with nesting red tails? How long do they stay? And have you found that they do or do not not move on after nesting is done? Our climate is such that many of the hawks do NOT migrate like they do up in New England.

    It's ironic. I've been here for 22 years and never had hawks nesting and now that BJ and Annie are here (since July) wallah..........hawkville. I cared for BJ at another location for many years so I've known and loved him for a long time. I've got them in the run right now after a little supervised outdoor time and they are pacing like crazy at the gate, wanting out - it's a shame - I want them to explore and have fun. But I don't want them hurt and I just have to get some work done....

    Advice/experiences welcome. (sorry this is long...)
    JJ

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  2. Bubba

    Bubba Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They will come back year after year. Thats a tough situation. Remember they hate the smell of humans, if you can manage to get up there messing up their nest and rubbing your hands all over it or even whew peeing on it will have them move on permantly. If there is already eggs or chicks thats your call most predator birds are protected by State if not Federal laws. You could cut the branch they have the nest on down to if you can't reach the nest.

    Bubba

    PS Don't break your neck climbing the tree either, tie yourself off. Have someone else there just incase you do get hurt, you don't want to be stuck in a tree for 12 hours with a broken arm or leg or worse....
     
  3. 4F FARM

    4F FARM Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How do you pee a hundered feet up a tree?[​IMG]
     
  4. 2 Beauts

    2 Beauts Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I believe it requires shot gunning a six pack of Bud. Then yelling "Hey, watch this!!" [​IMG]
     
  5. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

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    How do you pee a hundred feet up a tree?

    Would that I could!

    I can't figure out how to even get up that high in the tree, unfortunately............(assuming pee in a bottle for the moment! ). So high up, so daunting...... and I guess the fire department wouldn't appreciate a request for help here........!

    I wish I could get up there because if the nest was not yet in use, I might be able to bring myself to undo it, in the hopes they would go set up shop in more friendly camp.

    JJ​
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2008
  6. kinardmommy

    kinardmommy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My husband is in the trade of tree removal and he has to climb trees at times in order to get them ready to be felled. It may not be the most inexpensive thing to do but maybe you could contact a local arborist and see if they could help. They even have bucket trucks like the electric company maybe they could lift someone up there to check it out. If you eally buttered up the employe with maybe a cherry pie or peach cobbler maybe he would pour pee on the nest for you. Then again the hawks could attck if they have babies right?? [​IMG]
     
  7. jjthink

    jjthink Overrun With Chickens

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    Thank you. I think I was channeling you! I was chatting with my mom on the phone a little while ago and was saying that maybe I should call someone who regularly climbs or bucket trucks up big trees for a living......it will be an investment financially but also in my sanity!

    I wouldn't have it in me to hurt babies if they're in there (yeesh - at minimum there are probably eggs - what then? tho both parents are often off the nest.....yet research says eggs are usually in the nests by March or April) but if by some stroke of luck they aren't there yet......I don't wish to harm them - I just want them gone!

    Red Tails are known to defend their nesting territory for years so this could be never ending if something isn't done....If the nest is already occupied, I'm sunk......at least until they're up and out.......I would think many many weeks till then.....
     
  8. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    There was a girl down in Fenway Park last week that was attacked my a momma redtail that was nesting...just cut her scalp, but...Then she flew over during the game yesterday carrying a mouse. I don't know whether she ate it or dropped it on a patron...I couldn't see because of the angle.
     
  9. Wolf-Kim

    Wolf-Kim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I know this may be the red-neck coming out in me. [​IMG] LOL.

    What I would try is getting a pack of the firecrackers that make the real loud pops in bursts(like a gun fight. Then I would wait until momma or daddy hawk flew into the nest and then light the fuse and try to throw the lit firecracker as far up the tree as I could.

    I wouldn't use fireworks(the ones that launch themselves into the air), those are also illegal in some places(like here). Also be careful not to set someone's property on fire in the process, that would be bad(LOL).

    I cannot imagine the hawks deciding to raise their young on your lot after being bombarded with firecracker war-fare a few times. The hawks *shouldn't* be harmed by the firecrackers unless by some freak accident. Your not aiming AT the birds, your aiming NEAR them. Fear is the object, not harm.

    *Note: this thought process was brought to you by a tom-boy growing up surrounded by the rednecks of good ol' NC rednecks..gotta love 'em.. ROFL*

    Hope the hawks catch the hint, without anyone getting hurt(or eaten!)!

    -Kim
     
  10. amazondoc

    amazondoc Cracked Egghead

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    Guys -- read the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. It is unlawful to kill, harm, or even "pursue" native birds OR their nests.

    It may be annoying to have the hawks there, but it isn't their fault that you have chickens.
     

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