My Girl Ran away! Can anyone answer questions to help me find her?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by fb32108, Sep 21, 2016.

  1. MESOFRUFFEH

    MESOFRUFFEH Songster

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    I really hate to say this, but anytime mine have gone missing, I find them in the woods or pasture a few days later, or at least what is left of them. Hawks owls and eagles are a big problem for me, idk about you. But winged predators seem to be in more places than ones that can't fly! If a chicken knows where their food, water, and nest is they usually come back for one of those 3 things. Unless she could have possibly gone broody on you, and in that case, I'd be looking anywhere underneath bushes, shrubs, or anywhere that looks like a chicken could get under it and lay eggs and be concealed. I have never had a chicken wander off very far from their coop. They seem to know where their bread is buttered at my house! I hope you find your girl!!
     
  2. Adalida

    Adalida Songster

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    No, that is pretty far away. I thought maybe her old home was much closer to yours. I'd say your best bet is asking around to find out if there's other flocks nearby she might have joined. I accidentally stole someone's duck who had wandered too far from its home and I thought was an abandoned bird. It happily joined my ducks and I couldn't find anybody in the area who had ducks. It was months later that I found out where it originally came from.
     
  3. fb32108

    fb32108 In the Brooder

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    Thanks! ill keep looking. I do see quite a few hawks on the highway patrolling for small game and it bothers me to think that that was her fate.
    The problem i have is that i have a 7ft fence around my property, she was only on my property for 2 days and the following day rained hard all day so i had everything working against me. Since two days ago i have only let my girls out in the run in fear that the other one may go missing or if a hawk did come into my yard they may get the rest of them. is there anything you can think of that can help attract her back?
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2016
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

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    I have had such dispersal events many times. In most instances displaced bird does not go more than a couple hundred yards. Some lost to predators but is far from rule.
     
  5. MESOFRUFFEH

    MESOFRUFFEH Songster

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    Do you have a light in your coop? The only thing I can think is she could have possibly gotten over the fence, and in typical chicken fashion, forgot that she has to jump back up over the fence to get back in. She could possibly be out free ranging in the wilderness and roosting in the trees or something at night. I find that a light in the coop is like a chicken magnet. Draws them in like moths to a flame. If you don't have a light you might try to set one up and see if she comes back. however, being that you have other houses around that may not help much. I just don't see much of a chance of any ground predators getting over a 7 foot fence unless they dug under, but hawks and such are a different story. They can snatch a chicken without leaving any trace, but they usually do not carry them too terribly far before landing and eating them. You have enough open space around your property that I can't imagine her going too far from the cover of trees, but then again you just never know. I have even had chickens just drop dead for no apparent reason. There really are so many things that could be the culprit. I wouldnt rule out the possibility of her going broody either, that is if she is of laying age. I was missing one of my favorite hens for about a week until I found her under the carport. She had made a nest under a rubbermaid lid that was leaning up against a wooden box. She was so quiet and sneaky that I never knew she was there until I got a little too close one day and she squawked at me.
     
  6. fb32108

    fb32108 In the Brooder

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    Thanks this is so helpful! She is a little over a year old and she is laying quite big eggs. Before she ran away she laid 2 large eggs. I told the previews owner and she told me she may not be that far away. I will def put a light out tonight. I know for sure she is not in my yard i checked 7 or 8 times so far to make sure i didn't overlook something. I am planning on going to the 4 surrounding neighbors and asking to search their yard after work. to the left of me my neighbor has a 2 year old West Highland White Terrier https://goo.gl/JDVIqb and another similar dog to the south east of me. the neighbor to the right of me has a large garden and i have been looking there a lot to see if she may eat some vegetables. i have not seen feathers on the road so i know she didn't get run over i made sure to drive by multiple times. sounds like if she is not gotten by a predator then she is hiding somewhere or brooding? thanks again for your help!!!
     
  7. fb32108

    fb32108 In the Brooder

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    Is it a bad idea to take the other Rhode Island Red with me when i search? will the other one come out of hiding?
    Is it a bad idea to put her in a cage outside of the fence in hopes she comes to her?
     
  8. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

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    Trick I would use employs a fully adult rooster either in a cage or on a tie-cord. Give rooster some meal worms and he will tidbit call like crazy likely calling hen out of bush. Will work even if lost bird is immature.
     
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  9. fb32108

    fb32108 In the Brooder

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    Will any rooster work? or one that she knows?
    Will this work with mature hens?
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2016
  10. MESOFRUFFEH

    MESOFRUFFEH Songster

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    I did not even think about that, but that sure would work! I don't think that it would have to be a rooster that she knows, when they make their "Look here I found food, come look!" sound, my hens come running from all over the place, even if it's their least favorite rooster!
     

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