Monday, April 11, 2011

Chicken mystery solved, kinda..

We had a few incidents of chickens being predated upon. I saw a red fox get scared away from the hen house by Arnold the lone duck. GO ARNOLD! Arnold has some back up of the goose variety coming soon..
Addy saw a grey fox run the perimeter of the fence one night at dusk. We have seen Hawks make low fast fly overs and the chickens scatter. We have heard the call many of nights of a great Horned Owl in our woods. So the kids and I hiked about trying to figure out who done it.
Right outside the fenced pasture we found lots of fox poo,  an owl pellet, and part of a wing from one of our deceased and missing chickens. Near the wing part we found a good amount of bird poo, like from a large bird, perhaps even a chicken eating bird... We hiked into the woods that surrounded the barn and found coyote poo, and an owl pellet which had gray chicken feathers imbedded within, just like our missing chicken's feathers!
I did not bring a photo capturing devices as this was a random "let's solve this crap!" adventure.
So it was now leaning more and more toward the great horned owl.
On our way back down to the house we found THE kill site of said gray chicken.

 I went down to the house and grabbed my phone for some quick photos, I mean the house was pretty close, and this would have been a picture less blog post which is SO unlike me.
We went to back to the house again, and used google to see what killed this bird, and it was most definitely a bird of prey. They strip off the feathers to get the meat. Plus we did find the very incriminating owl pellet... So the foxes have been relieved of suspicion for now. Although, I am still one chicken MIA and undecided, so they are still on my doo doo list.
But we were quite sleuthy, and excited. We do tend to get giddy given this sort of opportunity, and had a nice hike to boot!


Heart Rockin Mama said...

My kind of adventure! Hope you are able to find a solution. But, wait until we sleep over... I want to see an owl!

Stephanie said...

I'd a' been totally giddy, too.
"wooohooo"in' all over the place. :)

Andrea said...

Sorry about the chicken MIA, but glad it turned into a mystery hike. Finding the answer is cool! SO many clues. Oh so nice to be out of the house and into the WILD!!

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Sorry you're losing chickens. Ours are free range and so far we've been lucky. But we have coyotes, black bear, foxes, bobcats, and hawks in our area so I think it'll happen at some point.

Jessica said...

A poo-adventure! How "stinkin" cool" is that??!! Talk about hands-on learning!