Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Attack of El Pollo Loco....

When we moved over here from Nebraska, we brought with us our "Thundering Herd" of feather rats....er....chickens. Since it was the middle of the hot part of a LONG summer, these birds weren't too happy to move.

They probably didn't like their new "digs", either. I ended up screening off part of the horse shed that we already had on the new farm. It would be a few months before I could get a proper chicken house built, but they suffered through until then.

See, the PLAN was, I'd open the screen on the shed, the chickens come running out to roam around the yard all day, then go graciously back inside when it was time for bed.

Well, a couple weeks after the move, we started noticing we had fewer chickens. We were missing about 10 all together. I just figured they had wandered a bit too far out into the "wilderness", and got munched by a Fox or Coyote. I have seen them out in the hayfield following the cows around, waiting for fresh cowpies.

Little did I know that there was something more "menacing" going on.......

It was kind of odd - a couple weeks after missing ten birds, a recount told me they were all there. Since it is usually hard to count chickens unless you get them while they are roosting - and I couldn't get into the makeshift bird house to do that - I attributed the miss count to not being able to see everybody from the screen on the front of the shed.

This no-a-count counting went on for at least a month before I finally figured out what was happening.....

The chickens were visiting our Amish neighbors a 1/4 mile across the field.

One day, I was over visiting Levi (a neighbor), and he told me he had seen several of my birds visiting his. He further told me about an "incident" that he witnessed a few nights before that....

Levi told me he had heard a commotion coming from Emery's house - which is almost directly across the road from his. He heard screeching sounds, thumping of metal and wood, and looked up just in time to see Emery being chased across the road by a big Rooster.

It seems that Emery had gone out around sundown to close up his chicken house, then go do a few things in his shop before it got too dark. Unknown to him, one of my big birds had decided that it was too late to walk home, so he found a way into Emery's shop to bed down.

Emery had counted his birds, so knew they all were in his coop. He had NO IDEA a crazy chicken was waiting to jump him when he got into his shop. It seems that the bird saw Emery, about the same time Emery figured out he wasn't alone. About that time, they BOTH headed for the door.

Emery made it first, followed by an upset chicken who - apparently - thought his goose was cooked!

Levi said he saw Emery headed out his driveway, with a rooster in hot pursuit! He couldn't tell which was more chicken - Emery or the Rooster! I guess Emery slowed down enough to realise he wasn't in danger, and he and Levi both watched the crazed bird run down the hill toward our back fence.

Both Emery, and the rooster calmed down enough to fully recover from the incident.......

I just wish I would have been there with a camera.....

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