Friday, February 15, 2013

Half A Wolf In A Hen House

The kids are out of school for a long weekend and we had planned on a "Good Ol' Lazy Day".  With our current schedule of church on Saturday nights and ski school all day Sunday we all needed a break.   We didn't get one ...

It was off to a good start with even the dogs deciding to sleep in today.  Around 7:30 a.m. I put on a pot of coffee and wandered down to my office to work on things for our school's auction (that is what has dominated my life recently ... another post at another time).  I was happily updating the floor plan and working on the logistics when the doorbell rang.

It was a kind passerby that informed me that there was a husky in my chicken coop currently in the act of massacring my hens and a lady down there trying to get the dog out.  It didn't take long for me to skip to the conclusion that it must be my neighbors husky/wolf hybrid.  I got dressed and went down to the coop to discover that the kind passerby was actually a dog trainer that was able to get Shadow out of the coop, and that the lady is my other neighbor that watches the hens when we are out of town.

The scene was ... a bit shocking.  It was my older flock of 16 birds.  We lost 7 hens and 3 more are in the infirmary.  I fear that they have internal injuries and will not make it.  It took over an hour to "clean up" and secure the injured birds.  The others are so shaken that they won't come down off their high perches (which is what saved them in the first point - glad I never clipped their wings).

To Shadow's owner's credit she was horrified when I gave her the news and offered to help in any way that she could.  The problem is that Shadow was following her instincts and now that she knows how to break into the coops.  The coops were built to protect the hens from foxes, eagles and raccoons - not half wolves. There is already hardwire on the top, sides and extending 18" under the soil.  We really thought the girls were safe.  Now Shadow will have to find a new home.  (Update:  Shadow did find a new home with very little encouragement from me.)

I'll miss the girls.  One of those injured is my little white hen that jumps up onto our laps to be hand-fed when the weather is warm and we sit down on the swing to watch the girls graze.

Both lost ...

Lost both BC Marans ... no more dark chocolate eggs ...

and 3 haughty Americana's ...

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