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Lost my my Pekin to unknown predator

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by SixBlackStars, Dec 31, 2015.

  1. SixBlackStars

    SixBlackStars New Egg

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    Mar 9, 2014
    Media, PA
    Hi all any ideas on what i might be dealing with... I lost my one of my free ranging Pekins today. I had 3 girls who were inseparable and they were happily foragong in our 7 foot deer fenced yard with buried chicken wire at ground level and at about 3 pm i went to check on them and one was missing. The other girls seemed confused but not hiding or making noise. There was a small pile of clean feathers in the yard but no other signs of struggle (there are frequently lots of feathers everywhere). We are in suburban Philadelphia and back up to park land with Hawks, foxes, raccoons, possums, and supposedly a coyote in the park. I lock them up at night and was never concerned about them in our yard midday. I also have chickens but they are in an enclosed yard during the day with aviary netting and locked in their coop at night. Are my ducks' days of happy foraging over - do i need to keep them confined like the chickens? Thete is no evidence of a breach in the fence perimeter. Thanks!
     
  2. heartmychicks

    heartmychicks New Egg

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    Sep 13, 2015
    Southwest Missouri
    Seems possible that a hawk got her? Since many predators are nocturnal, with your fence and everything a hawk seems most likely since it was during the day that she disappeared. I don't know. If you figure it out let us know. I just got done stringing fishing line diagonally all throughout my back yard to deter hawks, so maybe I just have them on the brain. Sorry for your loss!
     
  3. SixBlackStars

    SixBlackStars New Egg

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    Mar 9, 2014
    Media, PA
    Thanks for the reply. I was thinking of hawks as well but I didn't think they could carry off a full grown Pekin - is that possible? I never lost a bird to a hawk but we have so many that's why i have the aviary netting over my chickens. Our neighbor has a wandering male peacock who flies into our yard and is obsessed with my chickens. Strangely the pile of duck feathers was over where he likes to stand and look into the chicken enclosure at the hens. It is a strange coincidence. Today i will hike into the woods and see if i can find any remains [​IMG] Where would i find the remains if a hawk got her?
     
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Oct 3, 2009
    Western N.C.
    @SixBlackStars A full grown Pekin maybe to heavy to carry off but I think you'd see evidence if a pred came in your yard and went in and out of your fence. We do have some red tails here that I think could carry off my Muscovy's though. I would dif look outside the fence for remains. and put up things for your ducks to hide under when something is stalking them. I have found with my ducks though they don't run and hide like the chickens when the rooster makes the warning call they usually just stand in one spot and look up. I'd still make some kind of covering for your ducks at least if scared once they may run for cover. I think I'd keep them closer to home for a while because once a predator knows there is a free meal they do return for more.

    Very sorry for your loss

    Welcome to BYC
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2016
  5. MommaCass

    MommaCass Just Hatched

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    Sep 26, 2015
    White House, TN
    I am sorry for your loss. It definitely sounds like a bird of prey; are there any Golden Eagles in your area of PA? They're a little larger than hawks, not as large as Bald Eagles. They can carry a 10-15 pound fish out of a lake, a 7-8 pound Pekin from a yard would probably not pose a problem. I love my Pekins but must admit that as a breed, they are a bit too playful, trusting, and naïve about predators.
     
  6. SixBlackStars

    SixBlackStars New Egg

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    Mar 9, 2014
    Media, PA
    Thanks. I think it was an aerial predator and am keeping a close eye on them and only letting them roam when I'm nearby. I contacted a neighbor with ducks to see if my girl somehow got mixed in with their flock and she told me they just lost one of their ducks in daytime likely from a bird of prey so something is definitely going on [​IMG]
     

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