Monday, July 1, 2013


I can't believe it. 

Yesterday I wrote about finding remains of two hens in the pasture. 

Last night, I sat down in the henyard to fill the duck pool.  I was VERY tired.  I noticed that Buddy, the red and white rooster, was running around importantly. 

I wondered where Rammy was... Rambo... our big rooster, son of our Buff Orpington Rambo, our first big rooster here. 

As Buddy ran back and forth, I called to the henhouse... Rammy, you better get out here. 

Then I realized... I had not seen him. 

I remembered that in the morning, I thought he was still inside with the hens, while Buddy ran around outside.  
I had even written about the fact that he seemed to be faltering a little, and that I thought maybe the drake was bothering him, and picking at his tail as he went by. 

You see him here on the right, four days ago... with his poor tail almost gone. 

Keith was gone all day yesterday, and I cut grass for hours.  
Finally, I thought it was strange the hens were not coming out to turn through the cut grass, and I went in to see what was going on.  
I couldn't find Rammy anywhere.  
Then I got to thinking that I really hadn't seen him since Saturday morning. 

This is all I found. 

One of his spurs. 

It was literally in the doorway to the pen, and I must have stepped on it in the morning going back and forth. Not a feather or anything else. 

I had just thought, the day I took the upper picture... that we needed to trim his spurs again. 

I also looked back to this picture... taken March 23rd: 

There's Rambo on the right, and he was easily the largest of all our birds.  
And guess what?  There are TWO production blacks, 2012 hatch, that are gone, not one. 
The only black hen left is Libby, who is four years old and, of course, laying only one or two eggs a week. 

In fact, of the hens in the big henhouse... I am getting only MAYBE two eggs a day out of them now, instead of six to eight. 

The perpetrator is NOT taking the bantams. 

Heck, no. 

Is it this guy? 

This is the dog coyote we saw with the hurt leg, clear back in February or March. 
He appears to be gaunt at this point, and starving.  
Don't think it's him, I don't think he could make it up the pasture in the daylight and grab a bird and get away with it. 
I caught him on the game camera last night, desperately looking for something to eat. 

Am I worried about the little guys, the goats? 

You bet! 

The hens are staying in mostly now, in the henyard. 

I am thinking of moving the few that I think are still laying over to the henspa. 

I wanted to lower our numbers, but not this way. 

So far, no ducks are missing. 


  1. If this coyote is coming toward your place he senses food, be careful.

  2. Goodness! Such craziness.

    To answer your question from Saturday evening,
    we went to Theatre in the Park in Shawnee Mission Park.

    : o )

  3. We were having the same problems with no sign at all. I think it was a large Ferrell cat because when it was eliminated the hens stopped disappearing. Had to be something big enough to carry it away without leaving sign.

    Big foot???

  4. That would be so maddening! Our neighbors lost some hens to a fox this spring. We also had a kitten disappear, and we wonder if a hawk took it!

  5. Mary Ann,

    So sorry to hear this. I hope you catch whatever is doing it.

  6. Mary Ann,

    So sorry to hear this. I sure hope you catch whatever it do it!

  7. I hate to hear that you've lost another one. He sure was a beautiful rooster. That coyote does look awful and starved. I hope it doesn't have something that is contagious that your other animals might could catch from it.

  8. I'm sorry to read this. Most predators will just keep taking until they clean you out. Do you know how they are getting to them? Do you have live traps? We keep them in three sizes, we don't a coyote sized one yet but we have a fox sized one. It is hard to catch someone once they've already been feeding on your critters because they are less interested in your bait and more interested in the fresh chicken still walking around. Just some ideas. I hate to see you loosing them and like you said, regardless of your plans to downsize!

  9. I am so sorry, nothing like that and something is eating good if you have that many missing.
    I do hope you catch or it moves on.

  10. Man, Mary Ann, when a predator starts on your animals, they don't usually stop until you stop them. We had a terrible time with coons last year. Good grief, they even tore a hole in our chicken house roof and grabbed a rooster right off the roost. I can tell you, I was shocked the day I opened up the hen house to see a hole in the roof and feathers all over the hole with a roo missing. We fixed that problem by putting a tin roof on our hen house. We also bought a live trap. Something threw the trap, but managed to get out. Kevin thought it was a coon. Must of scared him pretty good, because he didn't come back. We even bought a baby monitor and put in the coop. I had a very hard time sleeping. I kept waking Kevin up because I would hear noises on the monitor. LOL We finally figured out it was a limb scratching against the side of the shed. We trimmed all the trees away except a couple for shade. Kind of scary to think something would grab Rammy right out of the coop in broad daylight. I have 2 buff orpington hens missing, but I am hoping they just sneaked off somewhere to sit. Not sure about that now. So sorry you are having this problem. I hope it moves on, but I wouldn't count on it. Oops, sorry, didn't mean to write a book. LOL

  11. I am so sorry your hens are coming up missing. I don't have so many hens that I can never NOT miss one. It is so easy to miss one of four. I hope you get rid of whatever it is.

  12. I'm sorry to hear this. I have had that happen to me on more than one occasion--I go out in the morning, I don't notice a thing, and at the end of the day, I'm wondering "Where's so and so"? Yeah. Been there, done that. Of course, I have more than 4 hens.

    I agree with Winona, they do keep coming back, but I've had success changing the game on my end. No more free range--they're all locked in now. I don't like it, but I like it better than dead or missing chickens. The critters are VERY hungry this year, it's been very hard. We've had many losses, and I know you have too. I wish you luck with this, I really do.

  13. Sorry for your loss. Too bad something has had to rearrange the scheme of things. Hope everyone stays safe.

  14. I am so sorry for the loss of your rooster, can you lock up your little goats safely from whatever is getting the chickens?
    stella rose

  15. Sorry to hear about the missing flock members.

    Our hen house looks like fort knox to keep the predators out. One crack and the bad guys can find it.

  16. So sorry to hear this. I, too, have had my losses to predators. I have all the birds but the geese penned for their own safety. My goats are pretty safe in the barnyard because of the light and Great Pyrenees and llama. Otherwise, I'd have to lock them in at night for safety.


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