Owl alert

Chicken101-07

Songster
Aug 18, 2019
292
195
108
Is there any chance of a owl killing a chicken?there's 2 right now in my property,every day that I let my chickens out to free range(I don't let chickens free range the whole day since I live in open woods,many animals live here that will make a chicken their lunch,eagles,raccoons and stuff like that) those 2 always show up,I didn't worried about them since my chickens would go all together until I got this bigger hen,she cant keep up with my friesian hens and rooster as my hens love to forage from place to place constantly moving,the new hen is like 5 pounds,I'm not really sure but she sure is a lot heavier than my friesian hens,the owl is pretty large probably around 1.5 feet standing ,the other one is smaller half the size of the big one,Is there any risk that it might decide to attack the poor chicken?I'm around but I'm busy changing water containers and watching that my 6 month old chickens dont wonder too far as they usually do when they are out but the property is like 1.5 acres,it will take me a few seconds to run back and forth if the owl decides to attack even if it doesn't kill it, might injure it,this past few days the owls been showing up at the coop more frequently even during the early morning when the sun is out,guessing that they've hunted most of the squirrels and rabbits in the area,there was times that I would find carcasses of squirrels and rabbits with the insides of their heads all eaten out,everything else untouched every few days,I'm sure that killing owls here is not a choice in North Carolina,should I just take my chances and hope it doesn't attack the hen or should I not take the hen out anymore??
 

Uff Da

Songster
Apr 27, 2019
475
1,114
176
Montana
Owls may not be killed anywhere in the US; they are federally protected. I have heard that they will take a chicken, but I personally have never had it happen, despite having lots of owls around. Does the space where your chickens wander have lots of cover from airborne attacks? Or is it really open? What color is your new hen?

You say you have eagles--I wouldn't worry any more over an owl than an eagle. Chickens aren't an owl's usual prey. They will only hunt them opportunistically--the same as an eagle.
 

cmom

Hilltop Farm
13 Years
Nov 18, 2007
28,339
25,006
881
Florida
My Coop
My Coop
:welcome :frow I have lost birds in the past to an owl. I keep my birds in very large covered pens. I put netting up covering all of my pens and so far no more losses. Many people like the idea of free ranging but must be prepared to eventually loose a bird to a predator. It's just a matter of time. Good luck and have fun...
 

Farmer Connie

Gallus gallus domesticus
Feb 28, 2017
17,712
60,785
1,317
Florida Peninsula
My Coop
My Coop
Is there any chance of a owl killing a chicken?there's 2 right now in my property,every day that I let my chickens out to free range(I don't let chickens free range the whole day since I live in open woods,many animals live here that will make a chicken their lunch,eagles,raccoons and stuff like that) those 2 always show up,I didn't worried about them since my chickens would go all together until I got this bigger hen,she cant keep up with my friesian hens and rooster as my hens love to forage from place to place constantly moving,the new hen is like 5 pounds,I'm not really sure but she sure is a lot heavier than my friesian hens,the owl is pretty large probably around 1.5 feet standing ,the other one is smaller half the size of the big one,Is there any risk that it might decide to attack the poor chicken?I'm around but I'm busy changing water containers and watching that my 6 month old chickens dont wonder too far as they usually do when they are out but the property is like 1.5 acres,it will take me a few seconds to run back and forth if the owl decides to attack even if it doesn't kill it, might injure it,this past few days the owls been showing up at the coop more frequently even during the early morning when the sun is out,guessing that they've hunted most of the squirrels and rabbits in the area,there was times that I would find carcasses of squirrels and rabbits with the insides of their heads all eaten out,everything else untouched every few days,I'm sure that killing owls here is not a choice in North Carolina,should I just take my chances and hope it doesn't attack the hen or should I not take the hen out anymore??
Owls are nocturnal. Chickens turn off like a light switch when the sun goes down.
IF YOUR chickens sleep in a tree, MAYBE...
OwL(S) want the rats your chicken feed is attracting.
 

CindyinSD

All will be well, and that will be well is well.
Aug 3, 2018
6,823
32,749
1,032
Black Hills, South Dakota, USA
Your new girl sounds like maybe she could be a meat bird? I’ve read elsewhere on the forum that some owls can take a full grown turkey hen. If your new girl is slow-moving then she could be prey to a large owl. Maybe consider not letting them out to range until the day is fully come, then luring them back to their chicken yard before twilight with the promise of their evening meal.
 

BirdsBeesTrees

⌚ 2 🙏
Premium Feather Member
Mar 10, 2019
3,827
11,423
712
Iowa
We have great horned owls and they kill and eat my heavy breed ducks any chance they get. I've heard of videos of them walking into chicken houses to get roosting chickens. :confused:
 

Farmer Connie

Gallus gallus domesticus
Feb 28, 2017
17,712
60,785
1,317
Florida Peninsula
My Coop
My Coop
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