Sunday, May 16, 2010
Death on the Farm
A peaceful silver wyandotteI returned home from a field trip to Santa Fe on Friday to find one of the silver wyandotte hen's dead on the floor of the coop. There were no signs of trauma or any obvious reason for it's death. It lay, unmolested by the other hens, on the ground below it's favorite roost and I can only hope it passed away peacefully during the night. Over the course of the next 2 days I would loose 3 more chickens. This time it was the young pullets, and it certainly wasn't peaceful. I had just moved their cardboard rearing coop to the outside run area of the main coop. The old hens were sequestered in the inside area of the coop as their natural T-Rex-like inclination is to kill any smaller or weaker chickens. During their first night in the outdoor run, a fox or dog dug underneath the utility wire fence buried 3" into the hard clay and killed 3 of the 6 pullets. That was the first time anything had tried to breach the fence in a year and a half and it succeeded. I'll have to trench the bottom of the fence in concrete soon.