Today I was working in the backyard with our contractor replacing a window. I kept hearing the chickens sound the alarm. I could only assume they were reacting to the power tools and hammering. Little did I know that the threat was real. I decided to investigate after they were squawking for a while. As I rounded the corner, I was taken a back by this juvenile Red Tailed Hawk perched atop the coop staring down at my chickens! It was big, about 2 feet tall, and it was not fazed by my presence. The girls, on the other hand, were down in the far end of the run fearing for their lives.
I snapped a quick picture with my phone, went into the garage, and grabbed a 2 x 4. I was ready for battle. As they are federally protected, my intentions were not malicious, just scare tactics. It was not until I was about 5 feet away swinging that it went up into a nearby tree. I was shaken. After a few minutes standing there, it took off, buzzed my head, and flew into the woods. I am sure it will be back. I now will not dare let the girls free range. I had never been within a few feet of such a magnificent creature. Nor do I think I want to be for a long time. The worst part was, poor Fifi was trying to lay her first egg inside the coop while all of this ruckus was occurring outside. She never did lay that egg.
Photo Credits: Tilly’s Nest