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She just disappeared?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Exotica, Oct 2, 2015.

  1. Mutt Farm

    Mutt Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Exotica, Love the idea of the disco ball! Looks way better than a bunch of cd's. You might want to start a disco ball thread in this forum to share that device with others! We have plenty of Red Tailed Hawk in our (yours and mine) area also. That's what swooped on mine, but a cooper could easily snatch and fly off w/ a lil silkie.
    I do see other birds chasing them and know that crows are a deterrent, but I sure don't want a bunch of crows screaming around here! IMO, I wouldn't start up feeding the wild birds again as they do carry so many diseases. I saw pics of your yard and you do have quite a bit of cover, so you're babies aren't like sitting ducks. I hung a couple silver metallic kid's cheerleader pom-poms from the 99 cent store to run the birds away from my coop.
    Hope you have a great weekend to enjoy this glorious weather and your lil chickens.
     
  2. Exotica

    Exotica C'est La Vie

    My Silkie was only 7 weeks old so no eggs yet! The thing is, it was at about 2PM and the neighborhood I live in is surrounded by freeways. Also, on my street alone, 10 out of 12 houses have dogs. I have never seen a coyote, bobcat, or fox. We have no wildlife nearby. I also have 6 foot fencing surrounding my whole backyard.

    I wonder if it was a hawk then.. especially since there were no feathers anywhere. Maybe an owl? Do cats pick up birds and run away? I seriously have no idea what it is. I have MANY wild birds around my area since it is abundant in trees and we have wild bird feeders out. I heard somewhere that they attack hawks.. so maybe it wasn't a hawk?

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    ^ The house to the left is their coop.

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    ^ The open area is where I believe she was picked up. The thing is, my chickens tend to hang out under the trees or in the shrubs so I believe she was running across when she was attacked.

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    ^ When I herd the "bawwwk?" a wood stick that I have next to the sink on the right to stir fermented feed, fell. It makes me wonder if the hawk actually flew under the roof onto my patio? The glass sliding door from my room can be seen here. The walls on my house are pretty thin and I can hear everything even when inside. I was out there within minutes which narrows it down to a predator that is REALLY fast.

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    ^ This is where all the first usually hang out

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    ^ Showing my 6 foot walls and my neighbors large grapefruit tree that houses many wild birds.

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    ^ When I found them, all the girls were huddle together under the tree on the right. The poor Partridge one that's bestfriend was taken was by herself next to the tree on the far right/
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2015
  3. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    aart, That's what I deserve for not reading all the posts before I reply.

    Just remember however that anytime a hawk makes any bird kill that there as a rule is a lot of loose feathers laying around.

    A Coopers hawk is the mid size bird of the three chicken hawk species. An adult Coopers however (depending on gender) only tips the scales at 1/2 to 1&1/2 pounds. This however doesn't mean that a Coopers hawk can't eat baby chicks like they are peanuts. All three chicken hawks prey on birds. It will do your chickens little good and much potential harm if you put up a bird feeder that lures hawk food (and thus hawks) to your chickens' run.
     
  4. Exotica

    Exotica C'est La Vie

    I wonder what happened then cause there are no feathers! Could it be a cat?
     
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Silkies don't really have feathers do they?<tongueincheek>

    I guess if bird of prey was large enough to hit and carry off a 4 week old chick you might not see any feathers left behind....
    ...might never know what happened.
     
  6. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    We have peregrines around here and could easily do this. But they would leave behind a pile of feathers, as would most animals in your area. We live in So Cal as well, so we know of the dangers in our own yards. You don't have much ground cover for something like a fox/coyote/stray cat to hide in, so if you monitor your chickens, they will probably be safe. My guess is a bird of prey or possibly a stray cat, but usually blood or feathers are left behind so you can't figure out much without some evidence. I hope your silk just flew up into the neighbor's tree to roost and will be back soon...good luck!
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2015
  7. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    All three chicken hawk species can negotiate trees, bushes, and shrubs like they weren't there. An alternative name for a Coopers hawk is "The Big Blue Darter." This separates the Coopers hawk from the Little Blue Darter hawk, a.k.a. the Sharp Shinned hawk.

    This should also help explain how Coopers hawks gets their names. I am only saying that escape cover won't help your chickens much if they get caught out in the open with their pants down by an agile hawk like a blue darter.
     
  8. Exotica

    Exotica C'est La Vie

    That's what I was kind of thinking, tbh. I've never seen my Silkies shed. All my other girls have feathers drop sometimes but my Silkies never! I'll probably never know.. I was on the watch today and no hawk or anything. We have plenty of wild birds.. I'm starting to think it was maybe an owl or cat now. There's just so much shade around my property and so many areas to hide!
    My Silkie is too young to fly and I have 6 foot fences! She was only 7 weeks old. This is a true mystery. I seriously have no idea what happened. It's like someone jumped into my yard and stole her? I highly doubt that though.. I'm not sure a cat would've been able to drag a Silkie away and jump over 6 foot fences. No feathers.. no blood.. nothing anywhere! I scoured the yard looking for clues bot nothing.. I have no idea what happened.

    Here is the Silkie that was bestfriends with the one that's gone. They looked EXACTLY alike! Even down to the coloring, spots on their head, everything!

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  9. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    I've seen them take both robins and orchard orioles not 50 feet from where i was watching. The hawk literally did a tap dance on small prey birds to make them more agreeable to becoming hawk chow. In 5 seconds it was over except for breaking out the leaf blower to clean up the mess of feathers left behind.

    In my misspent youth i surprised my fair share of darters by hiding in an empty chicken pen with the door open and coming out like a one man SWAT team when the hawk made its appearance.
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Was thinking about this...and wonder if maybe she just got stuck somewhere out in the yard.
    Always drives me nuts not having an answer, but sometimes there just isn't one.
    Hope you can figure it out and how not to have it happen again. Hang in there.
     

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