We had our first death on the farm today. I went outside to check the sheets I had hanging on the line and, as is my usual routine, went around the corner to talk to the chickens. Much to my dismay, Buffy, our Buff Orpington hen, was lying dead by the gate.
My theory is that she tried to get at something outside the gate by sticking her head through, got her head stuck, panicked and broke her own neck. The gate is an old chain-link gate from a dog kennel that we dismantled at our old house. I hadn't bothered to put any smaller wire over it as I wasn't worried about it. Now, J17 and I covered the lower portion of the gate with chicken wire, just to be safe.
It was a sad time. We buried her over by the shrubs we planted as a wind break for the future bee hives.
We will miss Buffy. She was always friendly and gentle and such a character. And her feathers were so soft.
That's sad to hear, and I am so sorry. I am puzzled because my hens are in a 10x10 dog yard and just stick their heads very far through the chain link to peck at whatever and don't get caught/stuck. I cannot imagine how Buffy got stuck. Maybe nothing like that will happen with mine! My first death of a hen, and only death, was by raccoon. Her death really upset me. So, i imagine how you feel.ReplyDelete
Practical Parsimony- I never worried about the chain link either. But it rather looked that her neck was broken (it was unnaturally floppy). Maybe she tried to reach through one of the small ones on the edge?? I don't know.ReplyDelete
I can't imagine finding one that has been killed by an animal (although I helped my uncle with sheep that had been attacked by dogs when I was young). That would be even more traumatic. For us, there wasn't a mark on her body.
At least I hope that it was some stupid accident and not that we have an illness going around.
Sorry to hear about Buffy. It's hard when it's an accident. I had a hen drowned in a bucket of water this spring -- bummer of a feeling.ReplyDelete
Sorry to hear you lost Buffy. Somehow we always think we're to blame when we lose an animal. But we surely can't watch them every second of the day and the do tend to find their own trouble one way or another. It does sound like her neck was broken. She might have had her neck stuck through the fence when a couple of other chickens ran by chasing each other as they do and she got knocked off her feet. It could happened as fast as that. So sorry.ReplyDelete
I am so sorry to hear about your hen. RIP Buffy. It is hard when our animals/pets are like a member of the family. Take care, Janet WReplyDelete
So sorry. I is amazing how with every precaution you take to keep them safe, they still find a way :(ReplyDelete
I think it's so cool that you have your chicken's named.. Buffy looked so golden and soft..Sorry to hear that she is gone. We have a pet cemetery too.. crosses and all..ReplyDelete
When I was a little girl my favorite chicken died her name was Betty Boop. I cried and cried..
Have a blessed day and ta ta for now from Iowa:) Springville
dr momi- Thanks- it is hard- Of course, we'll never know how it happened but there is always that... what if...ReplyDelete
Mama Pea- we can't watch them all the time and they do manage to find their trouble.
Janet- Thanks- While we're sad, we're not totally racked up over it- even the children realize that, as much as we liked her- she was a chicken. Now the dog of cats that would be a different story!
Jane- yup, they must not have read the OSHA manual about sticking your head through the fence- THAT's where I went wrong!
Tiggerriffic- they're all named so we can tell them apart. The children were responsible for naming them. Of course, if we ever raise animals for food- not just eggs- they won't get named. I don't think I could eat something I had been introduced to.....
Thanks all for your well wishes.
Sorry to hear! Losses are never easy, even the farmy kind...ReplyDelete
Sorry to hear about the demise of Buffy. It could have been a wessal. They can get into tiny spaces. She was a pretty chicken, and I am sorry for your loss. ...debbieReplyDelete
Having just been through losing 2 of mine, you have my condolences. It hurts, dammit.ReplyDelete
Sorry to hear about your loss, it happens but is never fun.ReplyDelete
Erin- The boys were worried about the other chickens missing her. It was kind of cute.ReplyDelete
Debbie- we're not sure what happened. I don't think it was predator since there wasn't a mark on her. More likely is what Mama Pea suggested- that one of the others crashed into her when she had her head through the fence.
Annie- I'm so sorry to hear that you've lost two. Ugh.
s- Actually, I'm glad it doesn't get easy. When these kinds of loss don't bother us- that's when we need to worry.