Wednesday, September 14, 2011

And then there were 11

This afternoon, I went out to feed the chickens and check for eggs.  Then, I went to the garden to pick ripe raspberries and tomatoes.  As soon as I opened the door to the garden, which is attached to the coop, I spotted a dead gutted buff chicken without a head on the ground.  Course, I took off running to the house....

"Dead chicken in the garden!  Dead chicken in the garden!" I screamed to Emil who was up in the loft.  My scream was a little high pitched, so Emil didn't quite understand me.

"It's a buff!  It's a buff!" I yelled as I ran up the stairway. 

Emil still didn't understand my screaming.  "Just shoo it out of the garden."

"NO!  DEAD chicken in the garden," I said slowly, no longer hungry for lunch despite my morning bike ride.

We have different theories on how the buff ended up in the garden and what predator had a tasty snack.  He thinks a skunk or raccoon entered the coop somehow and opened the door to the garden.  My theory involves a big bird who swooped in while the chickens were free ranging, grabbed her, and then dropped her in the garden because she was squirming too much. 

We really could use Chicken CSI to determine time of death.  Wet feathers in the garden lead us to believe an early morning snack or sometime before lunch.

So, now we're down to 11 chickens.  I love the chickens, so I want to keep them safe.  Emil upgraded the coop security this afternoon.  Keep your fingers crossed for no more losses!

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