Stop looking at my ducks that way!

May 13, 2018
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So, we’ve had idk how much snow over the past couple of days. I’ll estimate a foot, maybe more. Anyways, I arrived home from work to a stunningly beautiful winter wonderland. I eagerly went to let the ducks out so that they could check out the snow and filled the cement mixing tub with water so that Daphne (at least) could have a nice winter bath. I wished I had my phone as I could have gotten a couple of great pictures.

Anyways, as I was next to the ducks cleaning out their beds and food/water bowls, my hubby (who was shoveling a path for said ducks) told me to look up.

20 feet away, maybe 8 feet up in a tree, was a giant owl (probably Great Horned) looking in our direction.

Soooo, duck adventure time was cut short! The owl pretended to fly away, but just went behind a branch. Jerk.

No duck dinner for you!

The ducks are now hanging out in the barn again. Winter is no fun when there are so many hungry beasties out. Grrrrr!
 
May 13, 2018
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One of my colleagues told me that her husband was shooting an Owl that had an eye on their chickens with a BB-gun. Not lethal, no injuries to the Owl, just a painful warning to stay away. That owl never came back, she told me. - I'm feeding the crows here, they have so far kept all birds of prey away.

Hopefully, our neighbor’s chickens are ok. Sadly, the only weapons we have in the house are cheap steak knives. While I’m relatively sure that the barn is secure, at least as far as owls go, I will now have to resort to being painfully paranoid rather than simply extremely cautious when they are not locked up. Rawr.
 

KittyKat8828

Songster
Jan 5, 2018
54
127
101
kansas city, mo
One of my colleagues told me that her husband was shooting an Owl that had an eye on their chickens with a BB-gun. Not lethal, no injuries to the Owl, just a painful warning to stay away. That owl never came back, she told me. - I'm feeding the crows here, they have so far kept all birds of prey away.
We have a lot of crows that live in our neighborhood (they are the best protectors), but we do have a nesting pair of owls a couple of houses up the street. We have never had an issue with hawks or owls trying to harm our ducks. Although we do have lots of hiding spots and the coop is open for them to go in and out as they please.
 

DuckyDonna

Crossing the Road
Aug 26, 2018
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Dallas, Georgia
I went out to play with my ducks this afternoon and they were all in their pen....which never happens. All except Daisy my beautiful white duck. There was a hawk eating him in my duck run in the only part that had no netting across the top. I am so sad. I loved that duck so much. He'd sit in my lap and love on me every night and I'd sing to him and he'd go to sleep while I scratched his little head. He was so beautiful.
IMG_6904.JPG
 
May 13, 2018
936
2,919
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Vermont
I went out to play with my ducks this afternoon and they were all in their pen....which never happens. All except Daisy my beautiful white duck. There was a hawk eating him in my duck run in the only part that had no netting across the top. I am so sad. I loved that duck so much. He'd sit in my lap and love on me every night and I'd sing to him and he'd go to sleep while I scratched his little head. He was so beautiful. View attachment 1602021

I’m so sorry for your loss! Ducks have woefully inadequate defenses against predators. We do our best to protect them, but they are still at the bottom of the food chain and it sucks. I very much hope that the rest of your ducks are ok and that you are able to fix the gap where the hawk got through. Darned predators!
 

Abriana

Spicy Sugar Cookie
Apr 26, 2017
5,116
55,937
1,217
Midgard
I went out to play with my ducks this afternoon and they were all in their pen....which never happens. All except Daisy my beautiful white duck. There was a hawk eating him in my duck run in the only part that had no netting across the top. I am so sad. I loved that duck so much. He'd sit in my lap and love on me every night and I'd sing to him and he'd go to sleep while I scratched his little head. He was so beautiful. View attachment 1602021
You have such beautiful ducks. :hugs I am so sorry about Daisy. I just lost my hen Sophia that would sit in my lap for snuggles. It hurts a lot. :hugs
 

DuckyDonna

Crossing the Road
Aug 26, 2018
5,306
17,033
816
Dallas, Georgia
I’m so sorry for your loss! Ducks have woefully inadequate defenses against predators. We do our best to protect them, but they are still at the bottom of the food chain and it sucks. I very much hope that the rest of your ducks are ok and that you are able to fix the gap where the hawk got through. Darned predators!

I ordered more overhead netting but it hasn't gotten here yet. I've taken apart some of my tomato cages and have rigged them up to cover any areas that the hawk can get in. Granted I'll have to get down on my hands and knees to get into their run/pen but that's ok. A couple of weeks I went to the duck area and found all 5 of them in their pen which never happens and I thought to myself, "self, I bet there was a predator here or else why would they be in their pen?". And so it goes. I used to think that because my ducks were big now that a hawk wouldn't be interested because they were too big to carry off. NOT! They just kill them and eat them where they lay. My 4 girls went right into their pen and probably would have been next if I hadn't come along
 
May 13, 2018
936
2,919
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Vermont
I ordered more overhead netting but it hasn't gotten here yet. I've taken apart some of my tomato cages and have rigged them up to cover any areas that the hawk can get in. Granted I'll have to get down on my hands and knees to get into their run/pen but that's ok. A couple of weeks I went to the duck area and found all 5 of them in their pen which never happens and I thought to myself, "self, I bet there was a predator here or else why would they be in their pen?". And so it goes. I used to think that because my ducks were big now that a hawk wouldn't be interested because they were too big to carry off. NOT! They just kill them and eat them where they lay. My 4 girls went right into their pen and probably would have been next if I hadn't come along

I’m glad you got there before they were hurt. It sounds like Daisy died protecting his girls! I really am truly sorry.
 

DuckyDonna

Crossing the Road
Aug 26, 2018
5,306
17,033
816
Dallas, Georgia
I’m glad you got there before they were hurt. It sounds like Daisy died protecting his girls! I really am truly sorry.
I think you're right about Daisy protecting his girls. When I would let them out to free range (only when I was with them) Daisy was the one who was always alert, not foraging but watching. It's like he knew something was lurking.
 
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