Speckled sussex injured by hawk?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BearSwampChick, Dec 15, 2008.

  1. BearSwampChick

    BearSwampChick Chicken Sensei

    Jan 10, 2008
    Marysville, OH
    I found my SS this morning with a 1/2-inch deep and 1 1/2-inch wide gash on the back of her neck. It was open and moist and looked like the other hens had been pecking the feathers out. I was so busy yesterday and didn't go outside to check when I heard a commotion and later when I saw all the hens hiding under the truck, it didn't even occur to me that there might have been a hawk attack. DH closed the coop and didn't notice anything amiss.

    Anyway, I have her separated and tried to wash the wound as well as I could, then treated with Neosporin. Should I try to get antibiotics, or just wait and see how she does?
     
  2. Portia

    Portia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 29, 2008
    South Central PA
    Sorry to hear this. Sounds liked it could be a hawk, but that's just based on my experiences. I've had 2 SS taken out by hawks, both had only the necks consumed. The 2nd one I actually caught the hawk in the act...a huge redtail. No hits since, and that was almost 2 months ago. Still, the chickens are now ever so wary and dive for the cover of the deck or woods if anything flies over.
     
  3. BearSwampChick

    BearSwampChick Chicken Sensei

    Jan 10, 2008
    Marysville, OH
    Portia, I hope this isn't the first in a series of picking them off one by one. If so, I will have to keep them penned up. I went through a hawk scare this summer and haven't had any problems since, but I have a neighbor who has had everyone of hers picked off.
     
  4. Portia

    Portia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 29, 2008
    South Central PA
    We've always had hawks about, they have a habit of haunting the edge of the front woods by where the winter mixed flock of wild birds tend to feed. The hits came just as we were training a new rooster to guard our flock. I think the 2 hits in one week about set him straight and he is sufficiently wary and signaling the girls appropriately. It has been about 2 months since then, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. We also added several more emergency shelters around the yard so the flock has more places to quickly dive for cover in the event of an air strike.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2008
  5. DuckLady

    DuckLady Administrator Staff Member

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    Washington State
    You can clean the would with soap and warm water or diluted Chlorhexadine or Betadine solution. If there is skin separation from the muscle, you can gently run a solution soaked q-tip just under the skin to loosen any dirt. Then rinse well with the solution you are using. You can use a baster bulb to give it some force. Pat dry and smear with neosporin and if she will tolerate it you can stick a gauze pad on there to keep the dirt out.

    Just keep it clean is all you need to do at this point. It should heal well.

    Keep us posted!
     

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