first some history I have had a number of hawks visit the backyard through the years. Some have made half hearted efforts at turning my chickens into a meal, but to my knowledge, no feathers had ever been ruffled. I had one Cooper's to hover over a very defensive EE, roughed up like a fighting cock, she turned the hawk away. This is not the story yet. Last tuesday, while mowing the front yard for the last time of the year, a Red-tailed hawk was reeking havoc in the backyard. When the mower reached the backyard with me in tow, I came upon a large cuckoo colored feather pile. The number of feathers led me to believe death was to be found next. But after coaxing all my hens from under the spruce tree and other shrubbery, I found that pride seemed to be the only wound. Now the story. Since the attack, I have only let the hens out when I had time to shepherd the flock. The first 2 days after the attack, the hawk was setting atop the power pole like a gargoyle, just 40 feet from the pen. The second of these two days I opened the gate to the run and a couple of hens cleared the run by few feet and the hawk immediately dropped our direction, and the hens scampered back in. The hawk cleared my head by ten feet and disappeared. Not until Saturday did I let them all out. We scratched in the garden where the tomato cages had stood, my wife and I watching. Just the time we started to let our guard down, I noted one hen (the one who took the hit before) became alert. I turned to see the hawk coming nearly right at me, wings back full tilt. I yelled and waved my arms to no avail as the hawk came right pass me at a pace quiet impressive. The yelling had alerted the other hens and the hawk missed its target. I had a stick in hand which I gave a boomerang type sling her direction ( I call the hawk a her due to the large size, females are larger than males). the stick didn't hit its target either but did get the attention of the bird. I have not seen it since. I am still afraid to let them out without being right there, and they won't hardly come out. They came out this evening while I clear the rest of the garden, but a black vulture sent the scurrying back. I guess some urban hawks have lost fear of humans.