stubborn owl watching my flock.

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by ChiknNuggets, Apr 1, 2015.

  1. ChiknNuggets

    ChiknNuggets Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 16, 2015
    I have a newly started mixed flock of 6 week olds and two week olds. There has been a great horned owl watching them for the past 3 nights now. I've never seen him on my wall till I moved my birds outside. Should I be concerned about it? He or she won't even fly away while I'm out there. I sprayed it with the hose and it took a while for it to fly away. Is there any tips I should know? Are they even capable of eating a large chick? My birds are about half the size of it. I thought they only ate rodents. Ive seen it eating a small inca dove though.
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Owl is visiting for reason with a reward. Odds are it is catching rodents after dark to take back to chicks that likely are already fledged. In my experience, for this time of year, the owl will direct its hunting efforts on prey it can carry back to chicks. My Great-horned Owls can not fly with anything heavier than two pounds and it needs to be less than that if to he taken any distance or started from the ground. My opinion is your chickens are vulnerable and will be taken if owl figures out it can get to them.
     
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  3. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    I agree. When we have a raptor visit, my birds are locked in their raptor-proof run and coop for ten to thirty days, until the visitor has moved on. Unless you are out there 24/7, you won't impact his behavior, and harassing a raptor is illegal, never mind injuring or killing one. Just keep the birds safely in for a while. Mary
     
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  4. ChiknNuggets

    ChiknNuggets Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 16, 2015
    Yeah I live in arizona and there aren't any rodents around here. This owl has learned to catch doves. I just moved them from their temporary coop into their full time coop that I finished building today. I'm hoping I made it strong enough to withstand Mr. Owl. I'm only worried about the 3 2 week olds and my quail that lives with them. I'm on owl watch right now, but have not heard any hooting so far. Hopefully it gave up. This owl has been in the area for years. He's never been on my property before. I'm not harrassing it. I'm letting it know it's not welcomed on my property. I live in a suburban development.
     
  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    They usually do not hoot while hunting. You almost certainly have rodents.
     
  6. ChiknNuggets

    ChiknNuggets Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 16, 2015
    I live in the sonoran desert in a cookie cutter neighborhood. The only thing we have here is birds, lizards, and scorpions. The only wildlife is usually out in the undeveloped desert which is about 5 miles away. I've never had an encounter with a rodent here. He came by again around 3am. My cat had to go out and use the restroom. He tried to go after her. I swatted him away and he flew at me. HHe's never came this close before. How do I deter it from my backyard?
     
  7. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    Any physical interaction with a raptor can be considered harassment. Making spraying the owl with a hose illegal. If he is going after your cat, keep the cat indoors. Even if he can't kill the cat outright, he can definitely inflict life threatening injuries. When he realizes he won't get a meal at your place, he will move on to hunt somewhere else.
     
  8. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Rodents are present to be sure and likely rabbits as well. Is it possible a nest is close by. It need not be in a tree. Going after cat makes me think something is amiss.
     
  9. ChiknNuggets

    ChiknNuggets Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 16, 2015
    Yea it's very "ballsy" my cats are very old 12 and 14 so that's why I'm concerned. It won't even fly away until I'm 2 feet away from it and swinging a broom at it. My cats are like my children and only go outside in my backyard to use the restroom or to lay on the patio and soak up some sun. You must not be familiar with the phoenix area. It's all urban sprawl and the area I live in can't support any wild animals other than birds lizards and bugs. Illegal or not this will be the 4th night if it comes by and I'm prepared to use force if it comes on my wall or anywhere in my backyard. We have no trees in arizona so a nest nearby is very unlikely. Unless they nest in palm trees or small citrus Im assuming it has a very large range due to lack of resources. I've given it plenty of warnings that it's not welcome but going after my cat was the breaking point.
     
  10. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Show a picture of this owl so we can see feathers on its head. Does it scream or hoot? You might be dealing with a juvenile that is just starting to move about on the wing.
     

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