Shea. Poor Shea. Poor Regi and Pita. We came home early Monday morning to find the chicken coop door open. No chickens inside. Shea began to yell that “all the chickens were gone”. In a panic, she and I ran into the woods to start looking around. In my gut, I knew—We live way too close, or I should say we live with, a lot of wildlife.
After hunting around we found two traumatized chickens huddled next to a tree under some brush. They were significantly more skittish than usual.
These chickens love Shea and we call Shea the “chicken whisperer” around the house. I think they calmed slightly when they heard her voice. After about 45 minutes we lead the two of them back into the coop. We began our hunt for the others. After about 30 minutes I needed to go back to work, Shea continued to look and listen.
In the meantime we learned when chickens leave their home they typically return when its time for food. She spent the next 5 hours doing homework and listening, looking and waiting until dinner time. Still nothing.
Unbeknownst to one another we had each said a prayer to Saint Anthony that something had been lost and couldn’t be found.
I reached out to people in the neighborhood to ask them to keep their eyes open. Sadly, our next door neighbor had the answer — she had seen a fox in the morning with “either a bunny or a chicken” in its mouth. Ugh. I know to many they think “circle of life” and I can appreciate that but we all got attached, especially Shea. She treated these chickens like they were kittens or puppies and she carried them around a lot. They really liked her and she loved them. Her sadness was overwhelming. Our prayer was answered with an answer we didn’t want to know. I think we both wanted the hope.
Late last night Kate found a single chicken leg in the woods. We know now why the other two are so stressed.