Roo hawk detterent?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by StarLover21, Dec 9, 2011.

  1. StarLover21

    StarLover21 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,199
    42
    173
    Oct 11, 2011
    So....

    If I got a roo (as a chick with some other pullets......

    Would he protect against hawks? If so, how old would he have to be to protect them?
    Thanks!
     
  2. Debbi

    Debbi Overrun With Chickens

    7,290
    26
    251
    May 2, 2010
    Missouri
    Depends on the breed, and the individual. Some roos I've had would run off and leave the ladies to fend for themselves, others will fight to the death. Try to get a dark colored, large breed, and by 6 months or so, they should be able to hold their own. It's never a guarantee, some hawks will go after the roos too, but if the roo is at least the size of the hawk, he will stand a better chance at fending them off.
     
  3. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    17,732
    2,362
    466
    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    My roosters can, I stress can, give a hawk pause but not always. Breed is very important and dsspite having many years of experience, I know little about breed effects. My games are as good as any in that reguard. They need to be at least standard sized, bantams and red jungle fowl will not do it. They need to be full adult. My birds are not full adult until 8 months old. Feathers of tail must not be green (bird in heavy molt). Rooster must be high ranking and mating with hens or likely be father of others being protected. Rooster must have access to cover and usually launch his counter attack from it. My roosters will engage only smallest hawks in open. Hawk ideally must not be above them. My hawk-fighting roosters will go after hawk on ground but when it is above they seek cover.


    I have observed chickens for decades now involving interactions with wildlife. Such interactions are not without risk to the rooster. Hawk species is important. Some hawks are simply not a threat regardless. Hawks of concern in my area are red-tailed (goes after any lifestage) and Coopers hawk (goes after juveniles and occasionally an isolated hen).
     
  4. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,042
    62
    221
    Jul 30, 2008
    Missouri
    Quote:Couldn't agree more with this.
    I had a RRI rooster that if I could have cloned him I would be at home now and not work. [​IMG] He absoulutely was not afraid of hawks regardless of the size and the four or five years I had him I never worried about hawk predation. Never lost a bird to a hawk and they were thick as thieves especially the red tails. If a hawk landed in a tree he ran towards the tree wings out, feathers fluffed and head down. He would stand under that tree and just glare at the hawk. When the hawk flew off he chased him about 10 yards for good measure.
    He could spot them coming before any other bird noticed, when he made the hawk warning call you knew there was a hawk. I've had so many roos over the years that give the warning call with something as small and unharming as a following leaf. They cry wolf once too often and the hens will ignore them.
     
  5. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,042
    62
    221
    Jul 30, 2008
    Missouri
    Quote:Couldn't agree more with this.
    I had a RRI rooster that if I could have cloned him I would be at home now and not work. [​IMG] He absoulutely was not afraid of hawks regardless of the size and the four or five years I had him I never worried about hawk predation. Never lost a bird to a hawk and they were thick as thieves especially the red tails. If a hawk landed in a tree he ran towards the tree wings out, feathers fluffed and head down. He would stand under that tree and just glare at the hawk. When the hawk flew off he chased him about 10 yards for good measure.
    He could spot them coming before any other bird noticed, when he made the hawk warning call you knew there was a hawk. I've had so many roos over the years that give the warning call with something as small and harmless as a falling leaf. They cry wolf once too often and the hens will ignore them.
     
  6. TinyBirds

    TinyBirds Chillin' With My Peeps

    777
    71
    181
    Jul 9, 2009
    Texas
    The hawks we have here regularly kill even large roosters. A neighbor even had a large turkey carried off by 5 hawks working as a team. So probably it depends on how bad the hawks are in your area. The best hawk deterrent is a dog, based on knowing lots of other people that have a dog and don't have losses during the day like we do. We have bobcats and foxes attack here in the middle of the day also.
     
  7. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    17,687
    505
    461
    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    Quote:An emu roo would do [​IMG]
     
  8. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,042
    62
    221
    Jul 30, 2008
    Missouri
    Quote:Tinybird sounds like it's time for a dog.
     
  9. groundpecker

    groundpecker Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,143
    36
    164
    Jun 26, 2011
    Rison, Arkansas
    Hawks here prefer to kill large roos sometimes as big or bigger than the hawk. I've lost more roos' to hawks than hens.... at least they were from the egg eating/selling pen and not my show birds.
     
  10. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

    17,732
    2,362
    466
    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Quote:Were the hawks black or nearly so like with Harris hawks? A family group taking down an adult turkey seems plausible but not carrying it off, especially if turkey is a large domestic.

    Dogs are hands down best way to deal with most predators. In my situation, the rooster denies the Coopers hawk the snatch and run option with chicks and alerts dog to hawk threat. My dog loves to chase hawks despite not coming close to catching one. The hawks still will not risk dog getting close enough to have a chance.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by