spectating participant

August 6, 2008

Down to 9 Chickens

Filed under: life — suzanne henderson @ 2:26 pm

Our chickens have been free-ranging it to the limit. They have full access to our nearly one acre property and permission to also explore our neighbors well trimmed lot as well — she enjoys their amusing presence. When they tire of those two places, they go wandering around our other neighbor’s yard — I’ve yet to find out if the neighbors care or not, I doubt it since we see them all the time and they’ve yet to say anything. And on occasion, they’ll really push the limit and wander on over into the neighbor’s yard two houses down, luckily still someone we “know” — Alex is friend’s with their daughter, so I assume that counts.

Yesterday, it seems the chickens, or at least one chicken, felt that wasn’t enough freedom and started looking for green pastures. I went out around lunch time and counted 9 chickens - uh oh! I walked the yards for half an hour, leading a chicken parade (our chickens follow me around everywhere), looking for the missing chicken with no luck. When Chris got home, there was still just 9 chickens.

We walked the yards again and found evidence of our missing chicken. It seems that the chicken actually dug a hole underneath our back neighbors fence and entered their yard. I guess curiosity got the best of it and it just had to see what life was like on the other side of that fence — and that life involves a big, black dog and a little, yippy dog. Chris and I imagined that it got to the other side and then started running back and forth along the fence trying to get back out of the yard — chickens are flock creatures, they don’t like being separated. But at some point, this chicken got the attention of the resident dogs; whether the dogs were already outside or had been let out to find yummy little surprise waiting for them, we don’t know. All we saw was the hole under the fence (with the dirt spray on our side of the yard, so we’re pretty sure it was chicken dug) and a line of feathers along the fence on the other side.

The last time we almost lost some chickens, I was really upset about it. But this time, I feel no sadness or sympathy. I mean, just how much pity can you feel for a chicken that dug under a fence and got itself eaten? Thats just natural selection in process.