Sunday, October 04, 2009

First chicken lost to a predator

I was out in the field with Jack and Barclay, when they both started sniffing at something. I went over to see what it was before they started rolling in it (it's usually a dead field mouse or something disgusting), and I was surprised to see feathers. Clearly it was a bird. I was thinking hawk, but as I looked at it I realized it was a chicken - it was one of MY chickens! Dang it! It was one of the wandering chicks. I knew something like this would happen. They refuse to stay in the chicken yard, and so this one must have been out in the pasture and a coyote or something got it and had dinner. Very annoying, mostly because if coyotes start coming back for dinner all the time they'll pick off my chickens one by one until they are gone, and maybe eat a cat or small dog while they're at it (a couple years ago we lost a cat to coyotes, and I'd rather not do that again). Which is why I have been trying to keep the chickens inside the fenced area where there is lots of cover and trees and it would be harder for a coyote to catch one than to just chase it down in the open field. But this latest batch of chicks are just like their mom, Big Red, who refused to stay in the chicken yard. I found her a new home to wander in, maybe I need to do the same for these chicks.

Update: Because of the condition of the carcass I think it was a hawk that ate the chicken. I think a coyote would have eaten the whole thing, but when I found it the back, wings, and legs were still intact, so whatever it was mostly ate away the breast and body. I'm a lot happier knowing it's a hawk than a coyote prowling around our farm!

1 comment:

annaliese said...

I am so behind in reading blog posts (sorry!)--so I had missed this when you posted...so sorry to hear about your chicken! :( I know that losing animals to predators is no fun, and will always be so grateful to you in taking in our animals :) good to know that it was most likely not a coyote, though!