Saturday, March 6, 2010

Sad Ending to a Good Day

It was finally warm enough yesterday, even with patches of snow still on the ground, to take a book out to the deck and sit in the sun with Bessie Anne and the cats.  I get such enjoyment from watching the hens scratch in the leaves and eavesdropping on their quiet clucking.  Later, one of my customers for milk came by and we stood outside and watched a large flock of geese head back to Canada.  Nearby Boondock Lake is one of the resting spots for these birds on their flight path, and the air is filled with their calls in the spring and fall.  It became overcast and cool again in the afternoon, and Bessie and I snuggled up in the house for a nap.  Neither of us heard anything.  Toward dusk, I headed out to put the critters to bed, but none of the free-rangers came running out like puppies to parade with me to the hen house...something was wrong.  There, by the gate to their pen, were two small, forlorn bodies.  I herded the remaining flock into their house and then, searching, I found a pile of feathers from a missing third by the deck, and some of Frederick's tail feathers under an oak.  Frederick was with the girls in the pen, so he must have been attacked, but was able to escape.  I hope he nailed the intruder(s) good with his four-inch spurs.  I'm sure he was defending his ladies.  Wild things don't usually kill what they're not going to eat...it's survival, not fun...and this was definitely overkill.  I feel so bad.

4 comments:

Kathryn Williams said...

Oh...I am SO sorry! Death by old age is one thing, but at the hands of an intruder that is not even doing it for survival is just terrible. And I'm sure you feel bad for not being able to help Frederick slay the dragon!! Let's hope this is a one-time thing for sure!

Mark said...

Maybe a belief in fate helping some of the needy wild ones would justify the passing of some of your flock. A moment of senseless rage of one wild animal ends up sustaining the other wild ones perched on your fence posts or hunkered up under the trees waiting for such an event. Here in Florida the persitantly long cold weather has been responsible for the early demise of thousands of fish, hundreds of sea turtles and even dozens of the gentle manatees. Someone pointed out that the survivors will be stronger and the hungry survivors regain their strength from easy sustainment of nourishment helping them to fight the cold. Even so, it doesn't negate your natural instinct to feel bad. It wouldn't be good if you didn't feel bad.

Mark said...

Yodel ey, yodel dee, WordRuddelling is the new way to be! "Heidi, gather the goats. It's time for shearing, milking and cheese making". "Yes, Grandfather. Then will you light your pipe and tell me a story?" "Yes, Little One. I will tell you another story of the infamous and much loved Goat Lady of Farview Farms". "Oh Grandfather (giggling) her stories are my favorite ones. Did you know her, Grandfather?" "Oh yes, Little One. People would come from far and wide to read her Blog on the internet." Wow, Grandfather! Grandfather? What's an intnet,itnet, entanet?" "Well, Little One, it's where city folk go to learn about what us Mountain People our animals do with our day!"

Linda Cox said...

I am very sorry for your loss.