Lost 2 chicks to a Hawk that wont go away - Hawk questions

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by doodledo, Sep 11, 2007.

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  1. doodledo

    doodledo Songster

    Jun 4, 2007
    I was on vacation and my daughter was taking care of the chickens. They free range and have so for 3 months now. She came home from work and found 1 in the run. The darn chicken was in the run w/o any netting on top of it, by herself. My brother in law came over to help her (she was so upset) and they put up netting over the whole thing. Sat a ladder in the center to help hold it up w/o sagging. She left to get more feed the following day, came home and the hawk was sitting on one of the stakes that hold up the wire. She started banging on stuff and nothing made that hawk fly away. She said it felt like forever but was probably about 30 secs before it left. It flew down and slammed against the netting and killed another chicken. She left them in the coop for a day and today when I got home left them out. Went outside and 1 was crying like crazy. I took off running and the hawk flew away. Thank God they were under the pine tree. After this long story, [​IMG] what can I do? We are redoing their run tomorrow and making sure the top is made form wire or something strong. Its like it taunts them. Do scarecrows work? How bout bb guns? I feel terrible leaving them in the coop all day. If I do put up wire on the top of the run how do you keep the hawks from sitting on it and taunting them more?
  2. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    I had that happen last year. I lost a hen to a hawk that just flew down in the run (that's when I learned I had hawks at my new farm) so next morning I put up deer netting. When I finished, I came in and rested. About an hour later I went out to find a half eaten hen in the run and a hole in the netting. I guess the hawk didn't see it and hit it tearing a hole it then went through. I fixed the netting then took string and hung aluminum pie pans on the under side of the netting so they would blow in the breeze. I have not lost any more birds (except one BR who was by herself ranging in my yard, not the run) and the hawks have not tried again to go through the netting. I wanted to take silver Christmas tree garland and string it on top of the netting but I never found any. Give this a try, maybe it will help. The hawks will probably move on once they learn that the netting is there and more trouble than one hen dinner is worth.
  3. TheKidAndDame

    TheKidAndDame Songster

    Aug 11, 2007
    Gator Nation, FL
    I put my set-up in an area covered by trees. We do have one red-tailed hawk that hangs out across the street. The thing about most hawks is that they need to see their target before they swoop down on it. I have my girls where they have limited sight. Some others, like the Cooper's Hawk actively look for prey while in flight, even flying through trees so they are a little trickier. Luckily, the only problem I have had so far was a Hawk trying to attack me while getting into my car.
  4. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    Feb 28, 2007
    South Eastern Indiana
    Hawks can be persistant little buggers! When you have the chicks out, sit with them, with a water hose on hand. When you see the hawk....squirt it but GOOD!! Jet spray, full blast. After a few showers, it should move on....but dont let your guard down...it might come back once in a while...just to try. Good luck...and I am so sorry you lost 2 hens. The Christmas tinsle sounds like a good idea! I might have to try that...but for CROWS, not hawks!
  5. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I lost 3 banties to a hawk... to solve the problem... well, I stopped getting birds that couldn't see and am keeping the old wise ones. They have lots of cover to run for and can escape if they see danger. Then again maybe I haven't had a problem because of my broody. A hawk tried to eat her lone chick and when she saw her chick wasn't keeping up, she ran after and flogged the hawk on two different dives. Second dive, the hawk stumbled to the ground and haven't seen it since. Dinner bit back there.
  6. rufus

    rufus Crowing

    May 17, 2007
    Well, I probably shouldn't post something like this, but I will. My father had a pipe cemented into the ground in the chicken yard with about two foot of it extending up. Into this he would insert a very long pole upon which he had attached a skunk trap.

    Now it seems like hawks like to perch on high poles. When they land on it, the trap is sprung and the hawk is usually killed outright. This was very effective.

    However, it is probably a violation of some Federal Migratory Bird Act to do this. And if you get caught you probably will go to prison forever. And if some animal lover sees you doing it, you may end up with a real problem. In the state of Arizona, steel jawed traps are now illegal. But, this works, if you dare try it.

  7. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    Sorry about your losses...
    I probably wouldn't use tinsel garland because Crows LOVE LOVE LOVE shiny things..They'll have it plucked naked in no time...
    I think the hanging the CD's work because they see their reflection too and may think that it's another bird attacking them.
    Good for the hen...
  8. ncgnance

    ncgnance Songster

    Aug 22, 2007
    Iredell County, NC
    I probably shouldn't post this, but I'm going to anyway. Just about every kind of hawk there is lives here. But so far, only one has tried to get lunch here. He tore a hole in the bird netting that covers the run, but didn't get thru. When I heard the ruckus the chickens were making, I looked out the barn window. Now, what is that crazy chicken doing on top of the coop, I wondered. As I got closer, a white-tailed hawk took off. He was up on the coop trying to figure out how to get in. He has not been back. Now , I love all life, and I was an environmentalist before it was cool, but, having said that, I don't see a shortage of hawks here, and if one decides to take up residence, he will not be around long. Whatever harms my livestock harms me, and I pay the taxes here.
  9. doodledo

    doodledo Songster

    Jun 4, 2007
    DO they ever leave? Like in the winter? Or do they just stay here and hunt all year long?
  10. erinm

    erinm Posting For A change

    Feb 24, 2007
    Central Massachusetts
    I thnk
    you are right. it is a violation to kill hawks. In Ma anyway.
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