Mysterious Chicken Death. Could it have been a sparrowhawk?

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Sheldonator

Mysterious Chicken Death. Could it have been a sparrowhawk?

Post by Sheldonator » 03 Apr 2013, 19:49

The last of our beloved chickens (Barbara) was found dead in the garden yesterday and it would seem as if she had been attacked by something. We found her amongst lots of feathers, on her back with her legs in the air and her wings spread out slightly. She did not have any obvious injuries but Dad said she had a couple of small wounds on her back.

We have never had problems with foxes before as our chickens have always lived outside in the garden and roosted in a hedge, we thought had there been foxes the chickens would have been got before now as we have had them for a number of years. Only recently with the cold weather and having no companions has Barbara roosted in our front porch overnight. So the attack must have happened between being let outside at 7am and being found in the early afternoon.

We were particularly concerned as we didn't hear the attack take place.

Recently a sparrowhawk was spotted attacking a jackdaw in the garden. We are worried that it was the sparrowhawk that attacked Barbara. However we thought she might be too large to be a sparrowhawk's prey?! Has anyone else had chickens attacked by sparrowhawks?

We are keen to get to the bottom of this mystery. Any responses would be greatly received.

ladyplumber
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Re: Mysterious Chicken Death. Could it have been a sparrowha

Post by ladyplumber » 03 Apr 2013, 21:53

Hi Sheldonator and welcome to the forum :)

Sorry you lost your hen ......... I wouldn't think that a Sparrowhawk would attempt to take anything larger than a young chick or tiny Bantam, I am thinking Mink or fox which may have been disturbed before it could take her.

Although you say you've never had problems with foxes before, their population has never before been as high as it is now and they're everywhere, whether you happen to see one or not.

What happened to the rest of the chickens Sheldonator ?
1 BlackRock 2 Speckledys 1 Black Brahma 3 Light Sussex 1 Auracana 1 (noisy) Silver Laced Wyandotte 4 Marans x Cream Legbar
4 Barnvelder x Cream Legbar 1 Blue Splash Orpington 2 Chocolate Orpington 5 Gold Laced Orpington

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