We do a round of broiler chickens every fall and every year do battle with the hawks. This year the hawks got through my flash tape (which I knew needed to be reinforced but they've only been going outside since Sunday so I thought I could do it tomorrow ). The chicks are 3 weeks old and we've always had at least a few weeks before the hawks become a nuisance. Anyway, the hawk killed two outright and left a third with a punctured lung (through from the back).
It's under a heat lamp and still alive 5 hours later, but not doing great and I'm a bit stumped about it I have any options. Anyone have advice on what I can do? Aside from a humane death that is?
The options are:
1. Do nothing, which would leave a miserable chicken with an infected wound. I've seen those old back scratch wounds on a broiler when it's processed and it isn't something to eat.
2. Treat wound and try to keep chicken comfortable and alive. You'll still have an old wound on the meat.
3. Humane death.
Actually I used a 40'x50' piece of high strength bird netting and stretched it over their run. I had similar netting over the yard for my laying hens until the snow pulled it down last year (and part of the fence with it). I bought this chunk at the same time as I got them on clearance for minimal $. Forgot I had it until Mike reminded me.
I've always gotten away with using flash tape in the past, but this hawk is wiley.
I used deer netting to roof my fenced run 3 years ago & it has held up fine.
~$10 for a 50' roll of 8' width.
Even a heavy snowload just shakes off.
No fancy installation - I just stapled it in place and bridged the gaps with wire ties.
I think the small squares fool a hawk into thinking it could be a solid obstacle.
*friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon: Steppin' Out 1988-2004 Hey Vern! 1982-2009 Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
Ghazzu - probably air sac puncture. You could hear a whoosh/suck sound with each breath and see a bit of its poor little back inflating in a very wrong way.
2DogsFarm - It was up over our hen run for almost 4 years. It was secured to the shed with hog rings and to the fence / posts with heavy duty plastic zip ties. Worked awesome, and usually shed snow just fine.
Last January Seattle had a huge snow storm (30" at our place) and then rain on top of it. We were in Hawaii and the farm sitter couldn't get the snow off (no blame there). By the time we got home the snow had dropped the net to the ground, pulled down part of the 5' wire fence, and blocked the hens in their shed. In order to get to the shed and get them out with 2' of crazy heavy snow on it we had to cut the net.
Mike replaced it with a crazy complex pattern of electric tape strung in a web. I think it's more of an eye sore, but no eagle problems since we put it up so I guess it's working.