I'm worried about letting Aspen and Clover (1 month old Nigerian Dwarf bucklings) out during the day when I'm not around, because of the Falcons we have around here. Do you think that they would get picked off now that they are around 8.5 lbs?
You know my hubby is convinced we had a small dog (8lbs) taken by a big owl, out of our back yard a couple of years ago. That was at night (their last potty break) with 2 other dogs out there with her. I think I just herd a full grown Bald Eagle can carry up to 40lbs. Don't know about Falcons.
It must be like letting your children walk to school for the first time (do they do that anymore?). You let them go, but you follow them for a week or two, hiding behind bushes all the way.
At some point you have to let them be goats. See how brave I can be since mine are just born and definately too young to go out yet!
A friend of mines yorkie got abducted by a hawk. Took him a mile down the road and dropped him. Luckily he was ok but needless to say hes not let out unsupervised anymore. Hawks/falcons take chickens alot. I believe if they are hungry enough and brave enough they will take anything they can carry and that would be the kids also. I'm not sure though that they would come down when there's bigger sized animals around meaning the mom and herd so I wouldn't feel worried. My biggest fear is the darn foxes around here where I live. I keep my babies locked up at night for a few weeks.
Oh boy something new to worry about....I counted 13 hawks a week or so ago I was thinking how glad I am that I had finished my chicken coops...it didnt occur to me that kids could be carried off. :doh:
We have Bald Eagles, Red Shoulder and Red Tail Hawks, etc here- they will hunt the chickens around but I have never seen them show any interest in the goat babies- but My goat babies are larger than yours.
I never feared my kids being taken by a prey bird til last summer! We have smaller falcons and red-tail hawks here but the most I 've ever seen them take is a rabbit. I had a very big issue with Turkey Vultures! If you have ever seen one, they are the UGLIEST bird I have ever seen! AND THEY ARE MASSIVE! I used to stand watch over my kids with a 12 gauge when those nasty things would fly over..taunting me, I was told not to worry though because they don't kill, they eat whatever is already dead...I still made feathers fly though!
i used to have pygmies and one of the reasons i sold them was because we have so many birds of prey areound here. We have bald and golden eagles red tailed hawks falcons osprey great horned and screch owls barn owls....
i was terrified my little babies would get taken. Now i am more assured as my babies come out weighing eight to seventeen lbs. by the time they are good on their feet and ready to go from the big kid stall to the outside run by themselves they are between fifteen and twenty. I take them outside the stall during nice weather, but i dont leave new babies outside by themselves. This is another reason we have electric fences, we also have fox coyotes neighborhood dogs and raccoons. I feel if they are brave enough to go after my chickens they wouldnt hesitate with a baby goat.
There was a discussion on a Yahoo list a couple months ago about babies getting picked off, and they said its actually ravens that are the worse for taking kids. We have a TON of hawks around here and we've never had a problem(knock on wood) with them carrying babies off.