Use of mannequins to deter hawks?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by aliprowl, Aug 31, 2009.

  1. aliprowl

    aliprowl Out Of The Brooder

    60
    0
    39
    Nov 12, 2008
    Northern Westchester
    I have 12 chickens living in the Ft. Knox of coops, with an equally solid, large, fully enclosed run. But they are happiest when free ranging - and who could blame them? My daytime problem is the ever present threat of hawks - I know they are out there, and am waiting for disaster to strike from the sky. Has anybody ever used store mannequins (dressed) either standing or sitting in a chair out in the yard, near the coop, to deter hawks? I also see online a very realistic looking German Shepherd statue. I know this sounds insane, but since people use the fake owls to scare away hawks, I was wondering if fake chaperones could serve a similar purpose. I have a dog who is about as fierce as the GS statue, but he won't hang out with the flock anyway. He sits by the back door, waiting for someone to let him inside.
    If I can find them priced right, I could assemble an entire group of "people" out on the lawn. Are hawks discouraged by cocktail party sized gatherings?
     
  2. ksct

    ksct Chillin' With My Peeps

    459
    3
    131
    Apr 23, 2009
    upstate, NY
    i have never heard of such an idea. GREAT thinking!!!
    however, i have read on here that people have been out in the yard with their birds and hawks have gotten the chickens anyway. I think if you have a predator of any kind, hungry enough, there's nothing you can do..... AND animals are smart..... so if they are startled by the "people" out there, and they sit long enough, they will eventually notice no movement and go after your chickens.
    That being said, i'm no expert and if you have the means to put a party in your yard, who knows for sure it could work and you can be at ease.
     
  3. aliprowl

    aliprowl Out Of The Brooder

    60
    0
    39
    Nov 12, 2008
    Northern Westchester
    Yes, I've also heard they are smart critters. I was thinking I would only drag out the dummies when the chickens were ranging, and not leave them out 24/7, and also move them around frequently. I don't know if it will work, and it will be a horrid experiment if it fails. Fraught with danger, but the chickens are soooo much happier out roaming around and amusing themselves. Unfortunately, I cannot chicken sit all day (though it is tempting!).
     
  4. wildorchid053

    wildorchid053 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 12, 2009
    syracuse area, ny
    one person in here wrote that the hawk was so brazen it flew about a foot from her and took off with her hen...she felt the breeze from its wings. i don't think maniquins would work
     
  5. Luna_Chick66

    Luna_Chick66 Chillin' With My Peeps

    250
    0
    119
    Aug 4, 2009
    NE Pennsylvania
    Quote:that would be so cool... my husband would ship me to the looney bin, tho.
     
  6. aliprowl

    aliprowl Out Of The Brooder

    60
    0
    39
    Nov 12, 2008
    Northern Westchester
    It's a high cost, low probability experiment. But I'm desperate - the poor girls want to get out and explore and nosh and dart about and act like normal chickens. They huddle at the gate of their run and practically jump up and down, "Please let us out! Please let us out!" And these chickens have a really big run! Is there no solution to this problem, other than completely chaperoning them every second, or a guard dog specifically trained to chicken sit? If they're as bold as you say, even those measures could fail. [​IMG]
     
  7. geosheets

    geosheets Chillin' With My Peeps

    692
    3
    131
    Jun 8, 2009
    Ohio
    Quote:lots of posts on here about using CD's to deter hawks... it seems to be working for me.
     
  8. jennmugg

    jennmugg Out Of The Brooder

    82
    0
    39
    Apr 2, 2009
    Titusville Florida
    Our new resident hawk is not afraid of me AT ALL. He's huge and stares me down, just sitting there in trees waiting for me to let my girls out of the run. They are definately determined hunters. I would try the CD's 1st.
     
  9. You should dress them really weird... Make one a clown with a rainbow wig and a big red nose, etc. You'll have people talking alright!
     
  10. TXmom

    TXmom Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've read that Turkeys are good protectors, they keep the hawks away. Hawks are afraid of their size, maybe? Could you get a Turkey, or two? I don't know much about raising them with chickens, but I have read that several times.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by