The chickens are shaken and so am I

gtaus

Free Ranging
Mar 29, 2019
3,285
12,576
657
Northern Minnesota
My Coop
My Coop
I let them out for a little bit while I was outside, I’ll make sure to close them when I’m not there...

I think the point @Folly's place was making was to keep your chickens out of sight of the hawk for 10 days. Then the hawk might lose interest in your area and move on to other hunting grounds. If you let your chickens outside when you are there, the hawk will see them and know they are still on the menu. Also, there are YouTube videos of hawks swooping down and taking a chicken while the owner was only a step or two away from the hen. So I don't think your presence in the yard with your chickens is much of a deterrent.

I have my chicken run covered with bird netting on top. It's very cheap. I got my bird netting from my local Fleet store, but Amazon sells a variety of sizes at reasonable prices. I live on a lake and we have hawks and Bald Eagles overhead all the time. So far, 3 years now, no attacks on my chickens in the bird netting covered chicken run.
 

Folly's place

Enabler
10 Years
Sep 13, 2011
24,362
42,846
1,156
southern Michigan
The year we kept our birds in for three weeks was the year this young Cooper's hawk stayed around that long. She camped out next to the coop, 'come out and play' written all over her face, for two weeks. Cute and funny, in a way, and she finally gave up and left for better hunting elsewhere.
Her kill here was carried to our pickup truck tailgate, right next to the house, for eating.
Mary
 

BigBlueHen53

Love one another ❤️
Mar 5, 2019
21,434
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SE Missouri, USA
The year we kept our birds in for three weeks was the year this young Cooper's hawk stayed around that long. She camped out next to the coop, 'come out and play' written all over her face, for two weeks. Cute and funny, in a way, and she finally gave up and left for better hunting elsewhere.
Her kill here was carried to our pickup truck tailgate, right next to the house, for eating.
Mary
Tailgating right on your own truck, the nerve! :eek: Glad she didn't come back. We lost some chooks to a coyote a couple of weeks ago and are keeping them confined now. We may try letting them out this week though, and hold our breath. Had not had losses in several years ... Predators, bah! (Shaking fist at them!)
 
Nov 11, 2020
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West Virginia
I needed something to cover my run that wasn't expensive so birds of prey couldn't hide in the trees and swoop down and grab my birds. If I lost 4-5 hens I wouldn't have a flock left and wouldn't get any eggs (someone with a large flock might not miss 4-5 hens) I bought netting on Amazon to use temporarily until I was able to attach hardware cloth on top of the run permanently .After I was finished I removed the netting (attached with zip ties) and stored it until I need it again(still in new condition)If I want to cover my yard next year for the chickens I can .I bought black netting because its not as visible as white or green. It also keeps snakes and wild birds out.
 

Jenessa_096

Crowing
Jul 14, 2021
1,316
2,804
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Molalla, Oregon
I think the point @Folly's place was making was to keep your chickens out of sight of the hawk for 10 days. Then the hawk might lose interest in your area and move on to other hunting grounds. If you let your chickens outside when you are there, the hawk will see them and know they are still on the menu. Also, there are YouTube videos of hawks swooping down and taking a chicken while the owner was only a step or two away from the hen. So I don't think your presence in the yard with your chickens is much of a deterrent.

I have my chicken run covered with bird netting on top. It's very cheap. I got my bird netting from my local Fleet store, but Amazon sells a variety of sizes at reasonable prices. I live on a lake and we have hawks and Bald Eagles overhead all the time. So far, 3 years now, no attacks on my chickens in the bird netting covered chicken run.
I’ve had no problems since! 🤷🏼‍♀️🙂 Thanks for the advice!
 
Nov 11, 2020
1,627
2,780
286
West Virginia
I’ve had no problems since! 🤷🏼‍♀️🙂 Thanks for the advice!
My dad free ranged chickens 40 yrs .He had leghorns that were fast on their feet and flighty. They can fly good and are alert. We had a dog that protected his chickens at night but Hawks were killing them during the day. After a Hawk swooped down and grabbed his favorite chicken 2 feet in front of us he never free ranged again. Unbelievable until it happens to you. I was still a kid living at home (I'm 65 now) It came out of nowhere! We never saw it coming.Neither did the rooster or the hen.All we saw was the Hawk grab it and keep going.
 
Nov 11, 2020
1,627
2,780
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West Virginia
Seeing that chicken get taken right in front of us so quickly convinced us both to never free range chickens again. I hope you take our advice because many of us have experienced this personally.If you underestimate how fast Hawks are you may be in for a surprise. Our hen was blind in one eye . I'm not sure it would have mattered if she could see in both eyes or not. None of the other chickens escaped it got after and none of them were blind. We never saw anything like that Hawk before .It had already grabbed her and was gone before it even registered what was happening.We had no time to react.None.Best of luck and hope your chickens are doing well.
 

gtaus

Free Ranging
Mar 29, 2019
3,285
12,576
657
Northern Minnesota
My Coop
My Coop
My dad free ranged chickens 40 yrs .... After a Hawk swooped down and grabbed his favorite chicken 2 feet in front of us he never free ranged again.

Seeing that chicken get taken right in front of us so quickly convinced us both to never free range chickens again.

:old I don't know why so many people think that they have to free range their backyard flock for them to be "happy." From the start of getting my chickens, I knew that I had to build a big chicken run with bird netting on top, and that was what they had for "free range." Where I live, people who free range their chickens are known as former chicken owners. But we have a heavy hawk and Bald Eagle concern where I live. I'm glad OP states their hawk problem appears to have flown away.

BTW, I can see my backyard chicken run from my kitchen, dining room, and home office. So I have chicken TV all day long when I'm home.
 

BigBlueHen53

Love one another ❤️
Mar 5, 2019
21,434
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SE Missouri, USA
:old I don't know why so many people think that they have to free range their backyard flock for them to be "happy." From the start of getting my chickens, I knew that I had to build a big chicken run with bird netting on top, and that was what they had for "free range." Where I live, people who free range their chickens are known as former chicken owners. But we have a heavy hawk and Bald Eagle concern where I live. I'm glad OP states their hawk problem appears to have flown away.

BTW, I can see my backyard chicken run from my kitchen, dining room, and home office. So I have chicken TV all day long when I'm home.
You're so sensible! I don't have neighbors, but if I did, I wish they were you!
 
Nov 11, 2020
1,627
2,780
286
West Virginia
:old I don't know why so many people think that they have to free range their backyard flock for them to be "happy." From the start of getting my chickens, I knew that I had to build a big chicken run with bird netting on top, and that was what they had for "free range." Where I live, people who free range their chickens are known as former chicken owners. But we have a heavy hawk and Bald Eagle concern where I live. I'm glad OP states their hawk problem appears to have flown away.

BTW, I can see my backyard chicken run from my kitchen, dining room, and home office. So I have chicken TV all day long when I'm home.
My hens have a raised coop with an enclosed run where I can lock them up an hour before dark .After they go to roost I shut the pop up door. Mornings I open the pop up door and run and let then back out in the big extension. This is where they have the most "free range" lol .I have a game camera I check daily for unusual activity(predators). I'm a retired chicken lady who caters to them all day.
 

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