Yesterday morning was like any other. I let the dogs out to potty and I spent a few minutes petting the hens and asking them about their day. You heard me.
About 20 minutes later I was upstairs when I heard crows outside freaking out. Because this is so out of the norm, I looked out the window, searching for the chickens. When I couldn't see them scavenging bugs throughout the yard, I knew something was wrong. So I went outside.
There I found my poor Doris killed by a hawk. The raptor looked at me and then flew up into the tree full of screaming crows.
My immediate reaction was horror. I can honestly say I have never seen something so horrible. My sweet pet chicken being devoured! It was not a pretty site. I quickly called my Mom who I knew would sympathize with me. I used her to calm me down and figure out what steps to take next.
At some point I took a breath and realized that Doris was gone. There was nothing to do. And, in order to make sure she didn't die in vain, I allowed the hawk to return and finish his meal. (After returning Dotty and Daisy to the coop.)
Here is where the dilemma occurred.
My Rhode Island Red lay in the yard, bloodied and plucked. But here was this AMAZINGLY beautiful and awesome bird that was doing what it did best; prey.
It was hard to watch, like REALLY hard, but I couldn't help but marvel in the power of this tiny raptor that took out my giant chicken. And trust me, she was BIG.
Sam learned a few important lessons about life and cried a few tears for his favorite bird.
I loved that girl. She was the sweetest of the 3 and was always the first one to knock on the door in the morning begging for food. She had beautiful shiny feathers and loved sprawling out in the sunshine. I'll miss her. But here's the thing. She lived 3 very good years. Digging for worms, chasing dragon flies and scratching at moss. I can honestly say she had a great life.
The other two, for obvious reasons, are hesitant to return to the yard so I will keep them cooped up for the rest of the week, mostly to make sure that the hawk doesn't return.
Today we picked up 2 new babies to add to the flock. Their sweet fluffy selves are sure to help mend this frazzled family.
We'll miss sweet Doris!
Doris at 6 days old.
First day in the backyard.
She was very curious about the camera.
Sam relaxing with "Big D"
Me and my favorite chicken enjoying the sun.