Friday, December 11, 2009

Chicken News

I just realized in one of my latest posts that I said all of my chickens were fine. Well, that's not entirely true anymore. The last chicken update had Sunny being attacked, but otherwise okay. So, let's continue the story from there.

The very next night after Sunny's attack, we put all of the chickens up in there chicken tractor. Headed out to feed the next morning, and something had gotten underneath the coop and killed Spike, my Rhode Island Rhode. It was really gross because whatever got it tried to pull it out and got the chicken stuck under the coop. It ate the parts it liked, but not the whole thing. Seriously gross. We think it was a fox. So, okay one down, but I still have three hens and a rooster.

The next day, Sunny started going down hill fast. She must have gotten more hurt in the attack than we realized. She wouldn't come out of the coop and wasn't eating and drinking. We had to put her down which was sad. So, okay two down, but I still have two hens and a rooster.

Two days later, the chickens are out during the day ranging and eating bugs. When I get home that afternoon, Speedy is gone. No sign of her. No feathers. No nothing. We're pretty sure a hawk or the young bald eagle that's been hanging around got her.

So, now I'm down to one hen, Big Foot, and Colonel, the rooster. Colonel is very sad that his harem is gone and he doesn't have anyone left to boss around. Big Foot sticks pretty close to Colonel, but isn't the most consistent layer. Hopefully I can get more chicks in the spring.

So, now I'm down to barely any chickens, but we still got a problem. John's been noticing a raccoon coming up on the porch and stealing our dog food. I think the coon has also been one of the chicken predators. My theory is when we're out of dog food in our free feeder, the coon was killing my chickens. The coon kept getting braver and braver. Just coming up and eating dog food fairly early in the evening even though it could see us sitting there watching tv. It took several tries, but we finally caught it. And, the thing was HUGE! My guess is that it weighed more than Kaity - probably close to 30 pounds. We thought about relocating it, but then decided we would humanely dispose (exact terminology from the extension document) of it. I haven't had anymore chicken problems!

1 comment:

Jen said...

Hmm... I'll have to go find that EDIS document. Kyle found a writhing, seriously ill racoon in our back yard Friday night and he . . . well, he disposed of it as well. I'm not sure how humane an aluminum baseball bat to the head is, but it's what he had at hand. We think it was rabid, and I think it might be whatever rushed the door the other night! :(


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