Posted by: poofergirlsperspective | September 20, 2007

poor scared chickens

poor-scared-chickens.jpg

This afternoon I was working outside because it is so beautiful.  I was planting some hollyhocks that Mom had given us this past weekend and I noticed that they were sitting in the porch next to some apples for the chickens.  Seems that it had been a long time since we had cut up any apples for the chickens so being the good chicken mom that I am, I got to it right away and headed out with my bucket of apples. 

On my way to the chicken coop I suddenly realized that all the chickens were hysterical … they get like that when there is danger around.  They sound an alarm to one another to watch out.  They were scattering everywhere … finding any place to hide where they felt protected. 

I scanned the area to see what could be causing such a ruckus and there … there he was … a huge hawk!  Well at least I am pretty sure that it was a hawk.  He was swooping down to try to catch one of our chickens I assume.  I saw him swoop twice before he headed for a nearby tree.  I like to think that he saw me and got scared … because as you already know, farm girls are mighty tough.  Interestingly, the rooster stayed outside, right where the hawk was … either he is not the brightest rooster, or he was protecting the others.  By the time the hawk had disappeared in the tree the chickens were more hysterical then before.  It is a horrible sound … and the more they got the going the louder they got.  It reminded me of when a baby cries … and all the babies around start to cry. 

I looked high and low but he must have been well hidden in the tree since I did not see him fly away from it.  He was nowhere to be found.  I had one moment of fear when an image from the movie “the birds” flashed in my mind and I feared that he would see me coming and try to attack me … but then I reassured myself that he was supposed to be afraid of me.   

The chickens were loud, really loud … and my calming and reassuring words of “it’s ok … he is gone … I think?” didn’t seem to help.  So like any good chicken mom I resorted to calming their fears with food!  I had forgotten about the apples that I was still carrying in the bucket and so I tossed them in the chicken coop and one by one they started to stop the danger alarm.  It was hard to screech when you had a yummy apple to peck at. 

Though I don’t know if they will venture out of their safety zones anytime too soon, for now there are calm chickens again residing at the farm and all the alarms have stopped.  Nice to know that I have found a trick to calm the fears of a chicken … and you thought that an apple a day kept the doctor away.

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Responses

  1. The photo is pathetic; poor little chickens. As I recall, when my uncle Bernard raised turkeys they weren’t even intelligent enough to get out of the driving rain. He would have to go out and drive them in. Their shelters were completely open on the front. They didn’t even have to locate a door!! But they sure were tasty when they made it to the table later;)

  2. So do you think it was a chicken hawk?? I never had anything bother my chickens…except the dog that wanted to eat them. I remember getting a puppy once and thinking I could keep him away from the chickens by letting him get scared by the rooster. So I let a rooster out and put the puppy down…he took off after the rooster and they ended up in the garage/workshed…I heard horrible squawking and growling…and the puppy came out with rooster feathers in his mouth. The rooster was alive but it sure didn’t teach the pup anything except how fun it was to antagonize poulty!

  3. your a great “chicken mom”!

  4. Mom … yeah the photo is sorta pathetic, but they were really scared. I even felt bad for them! Ha. But poultry are not very bright … especially since the door to the chicken coop is about 6 feet away from where they were.

    Jeri … I sorta thought that I should call him a “chicken hawk” to be funny but then I remembered that there really are chicken hawks and I didn’t want to be wrong! He was back today … he is a persistent hawk … whatever kind he is!

    Tina … thank you very much! :)

  5. That likely was what is called a ‘Red-tailed Hawk” Two years ago one of those buggers got at least 4 of the smaller “young” chickens. You should arm yourself with the 410 and kill the murderer. It is illegal to kill thme but who never does something illegal?

  6. veteran haymaker … also known as father-in-law Leo … I am not too sure that I would like to use a gun but I suppose that for safety measure on a farm I should at least know how. However, I am not sure a hawk would or should be my first target practice. Ha. :)

  7. Beware of owls too. It’s generally owls that get my chickens and they don’t even eat them. They just kill them and leave them lay. Pitiful!


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