Monday, February 6, 2012

Chicken Report {crisis at the coop}

I haven’t done a chicken report in a long time, as there really hasn’t been much to report. We’re down to seven chickens and about one egg a day. The girls are getting old (and we think Hollywood is tough), so they’re just not producing eggs like they used to. We love them dearly though, so they still get treated like queens, but we hope to get some new chicks this spring.

The coop was anything but quiet last night. Just as we were all settled in to watch the big game and with 30 minutes to kick off, my neighbor came knocking on the door. He informed us that our chickens were all over the place. They were across the road and down the street. When I looked out at the coop, sure enough, there was a dog sniffing around. We all threw on our boots and immediately went looking for our girls. Before I could even set a plan for triage, my daughter was off, chasing the dog clear across the neighbor’s yard. My husband and another neighbor found two chickens across the street and carried them home to safety. Then my daughter found another one. We had three chickens out of seven. Darkness was falling quick and the game was about to begin, so my husband abandoned the project, saying they’d come home in the morning¬—if they were alive.

I stood there under the almost full moon, waiting by the coop. Like little soldiers, two more appeared in the shadows, quietly assessing to see if the coast was clear. Now we had five. The game was on. I had to quit for the night. We figured the dog must have gotten the other two. This morning, when we opened the coop, six chickens ran out. We were pleasantly surprised to learn that one smart girl must have been hiding pretty well in the coop. We figured the dog must have gotten the last one. After all the mayhem, losing one didn’t seem so bad.

This afternoon I went out for a run, when I was stretching, something caught my eye. The last Rhode Island Red was lingering around the yard by the coop. I opened the door to the run, and she calmly walked in. Most days, that chore doesn’t go so smoothly, but today, she was happy to be home again. Even though the game didn't turn out the way we wanted, we couldn't be more thrilled with the way the crisis at the coop turned out.