Severely Traumatized Chickens

Rider3

Chirping
Aug 26, 2009
13
0
75
Hello, I am relatively new to raising chickens, and I had a horrible experience this past Friday. I wonder if anyone knows how long the effects of this will last. After having my chickens for 3 years, this is the first winter that the hawks are coming for them. I've already lost 3 of my hens to the hawks. After the last attack, I rigged up fishing line and flags all above their turnout, thinking it would deter the hawks. Nope. Last Friday, they came back twice - first a redtail hawk and then later a Cooper's hawk, smaller yet really mean. I saved the last of my hens (got 3 left), but they are so traumatized that they won't even come down from the nesting boxes into the main area of the coop, which is all covered and contained. When they're locked in, nothing can get them, but they won't even go into the main part of the coop for their food. I've had to move their food/water up into the nesting boxes. There, they will eat/drink. I've never seen them so scared, and I cannot blame them. Any suggestions on how to get them back to being how they were before? It breaks my heart to see them so scared. I feel like a helpless mother. Thanks for any advice.
 

GrannysRoost

Songster
8 Years
May 4, 2011
650
0
111
Casa Grande
Make sure everything is secure first, they are traumatized and are in a safe place. Then take out some treats, talk to them to coax out of the nest boxes and eventually they will come to you and forget...If nothing else, just that them be for a few days and they will move further out. Good luck!
 
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ChickensRDinos

Songster
7 Years
Aug 19, 2012
2,242
240
208
Los Angeles
Make sure everything is secure first, they are traumatized and are in a safe place. Then take out some treats, talk to them to coax out of the nest boxes and eventually they will come to you and forget...If nothing else, just that them be for a few days and they will move further out. Good luck!

x2 make sure they are in a predator proof environment. Give them some really good treats and move their food back down so they have to come down to get it. Give them a little time to get over it but they will.
 

llandry

Songster
8 Years
May 8, 2012
793
164
191
jersey shore, nj
X3 I lost two chickens a few months ago to what I think was a racoon. It took a little over a week for the rest to begin acting normally again. Two weeks ago i lost another to a stray cat and again it took about a week. No more free ranging for us. This past weekend we built a 10x10 covered enclosure. Today was the first day they were confined to their new area. They were definitely pouting.....but alive!

Good luck and i'm sorry for what you're going thru. It's heart breaking. We had a decent amount of damage from hurricane sandy and all i could think of was my poor polish who got killed by a cat. :(
 

mg15

Songster
8 Years
Aug 22, 2012
1,298
109
241
Hello, I am relatively new to raising chickens, and I had a horrible experience this past Friday. I wonder if anyone knows how long the effects of this will last. After having my chickens for 3 years, this is the first winter that the hawks are coming for them. I've already lost 3 of my hens to the hawks. After the last attack, I rigged up fishing line and flags all above their turnout, thinking it would deter the hawks. Nope. Last Friday, they came back twice - first a redtail hawk and then later a Cooper's hawk, smaller yet really mean. I saved the last of my hens (got 3 left), but they are so traumatized that they won't even come down from the nesting boxes into the main area of the coop, which is all covered and contained. When they're locked in, nothing can get them, but they won't even go into the main part of the coop for their food. I've had to move their food/water up into the nesting boxes. There, they will eat/drink. I've never seen them so scared, and I cannot blame them. Any suggestions on how to get them back to being how they were before? It breaks my heart to see them so scared. I feel like a helpless mother. Thanks for any advice.
My dog got our darling white young leghorn. They were also traumatized. I sat outside with
them in a lounge chair where I give them treats. I brought out my iPad and played classical
music and talked to them. I gave them favorites and just stayed out there for the longest
time, they started to jump up on me and sit. All five came up and I was just with them.
 

Kierciejo

In the Brooder
6 Years
Jul 7, 2013
11
0
22
Graham, NC
I'm so glad you posted this. I'm really new to chickens too, and we just lost one of our 7 wk old chicks to what I think was the neighbor's dog. We want to free-range in our fenced in yard and we've been giving them a little freedom each day, but a storm came barreling in and they didn't go back into the coop. Instead they scattered and one ended up on the other side of the fence through a hole I was unaware of :-( We rushed outside as soon as we heard the rain, but it wasn't fast enough. I feel like the most AWFUL chick momma because now I can't coax the others out of the coop no matter how hard I try. It's only been a few days, though, so that is hopeful hearing that maybe in a week they will trust me and the yard again. :-(
 

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