This post was going to start out very cheery with an update on nutrition and growth about my Barred Rock chicks who are all named Stella.
|A Barred Rock chick who survived the heinous attack|
But tragic news has struck the ranch - three little Stellas have left this Earth.
I was going into town for a meeting at 6 pm and the roof on the coop had been closed all day so I thought they might be getting hot since it was 83 degrees today. I opened the hatch and left.
When I returned at 8 pm, I started feeding the horses and went to check on the chickens and top off their feed pan. Sadly, two chickens were lying in the coop dead and one other was missing. The two that were dead in the coop looked like their necks had been broken and bitten but their wings and legs were intact. Basically, I think the killer was killing for sport and took the third away for dinner. I'm not impressed. The seven remaining chicks were understandably huddled together in the corner and probably traumatized.
So, we've closed the lid and set a live trap for the perpetrator. I have no problem seeking revenge on whatever varmint attacked my baby chickens. I will punish appropriately.
The obvious sadness of my chickens, even though they're small, is that I do care about them. They were in my care and it was my job to raise them and I couldn't protect them - I feel horrible. On top of that, it's also a financial loss. Not a huge one but down the road, that's three fewer chickens to lay eggs. If I want to boost the flock, I'll have to go buy three more chicks (which I'll probably do but maybe I'll get a different breed. Suggestions?).
The next update will hopefully feature me bragging about my varmint catching and a more upbeat post about nutrition and growth of the baby chickens.
~ Buzzard ~
Labels: animal care, animal well-being, backyard chickens, Barred Rock chickens, chickens, chicks, death, family farm, family farmers, livestock, raising chicks