Lost Snowbell the Leghorn to a Hawk

K-12 Chickens

9 Years
Oct 6, 2010
Yesterday I looked outside and saw an immature Red-Tailed Hawk sitting on top of Snowbell, my leghorn. I ran outside and the hawk flew off a little ways and landed in a tree. No damage had really been done to Snowbell even though she was dead, except for a few scratches on her comb. I think because she was pure white that she was targeted. The other girls were hiding under the coop and porch. I really like hawks, but now I'm not sure! Poor Snowbell.
Do you think the hawk will be back even though it didn't get the chance to eat her?
Not likely. But if hes hungry enough to try a chicken, he might. Im really sorry for your loss. Id die if one of mine got picked of by a halk. But keep in mind, halks have to eat too. (although taking peoples chickens isnt right)
The hawk will most definitely be back. Any measure of success is still a success. It will be looking for her body to feed on.
Sorry for your loss.
Did it fly away??
If its still close by yes I do think it will be back.. If it flew off it might have taken you as a threat and won't..I'm so sorry about your chicken. I had ions take one of my barred rocks last year. Spent six hours running from tree to tree to tree. It finally left never seen one since.
White fowl are big targets. I had one white Guinea that almost made it to one year old. The problem with Guineas is that they go all over the place including the deep woods across the street. I found a wing and a leg, completely eaten, which around here is COYOTE. If I kept white chickens, I wouldn't free range them.

I have 5 lavender guineas and a couple of Buonaparte (Pied Pearls with the white patches on the breasts); they seem to be better camouflaged.
Yes, it will be back. You've got food in your yard that is an easy target. It's winter. Food is harder to come by, and there are all those nice fat slow chickens just standing around in the open.

If you don't want to lose more chickens, pen the birds up in something that has a cover over it. It's vaguely possible that the hawk will leave after a couple of weeks if it can't get to your chickens.

On the other hand, any time you leave your chickens loose, you are taking the risk that something will come along to eat them.
They've been kept in a covered run since the attack with a tarp sometimes covering it. We've got Michigan chickens!
I've heard that Snowy Owls have been wandering South this year so I'm assuming the hawks are doing the same.
After I read this post, I had a dream that all my chickens were brutally maimed. Chicken parts all over the place, feathers everywhere & no clue as to who or what 'dun it.
I will be sure to close the coop door every night, it's much more secure than the run entrance.

I'm so sorry for your loss.
I've had a leghorn attacked by a hawk in the past too, though thankfully she turned out alright. About the only way to keep 'em safe from hawks is either keep them in a pen with some welded wire/hardware cloth on top, or supervise them while they free range. My leghorn was attacked IN her pen with covering (granted, chicken wire with a what was thought to be small opening that needed to be mended). She would've been gone if she'd been out of the pen.

As a chicken owner I don't like hawks because I can never free range unless it's with supervision. The other critters can be handled because of the fences and dogs we have but hawks pretty much know no boundaries, and they've got the law protecting them. I'm grateful that hawks will catch rats/mice and snakes, and they're striking to look at but that's about the only positive things I can say about them.

But if that hawk doesn't come back, another will. If it got a hold of one chicken it will try to get another. Those things are wiley.

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