Response of Free-ranging Hens with Broods to a Turkey Vulture

centrarchid

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Sep 19, 2009
26,451
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Holts Summit, Missouri
I have several broods centered on yard around the house where all but one brood is penned in overnight and through end of work day to be released for that couple to few hours before dark. During the release time the broods typically forage an area approaching six acres where about half of that area is very much in the open. The area foraged means the birds can go well over a 100 yards in any direction from their respective pens. About three days ago we killed a Raccoon and placed the carcass out for another reason. Placement was about 25 yards from where two of the broods are penned. When kids and I returned home yesterday we flushed a Turkey Vulture off the Raccoon carcass. Kids got a kick out of being so close to the vulture. It looked big, especially when flying off.

When broods where released, the chicks stayed much closer to hens and none of the broods ventured out into open even when clearly looking for eats. Behavior of the chickens was modified even two hours after the vulture left.
 

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