Chicken Attack

4 09 2009

When we got our chickens, they came to us in the form of 8 fuzzy yellow and brown peeps in a box from a farm about an hour away. We weren’t sure who was male and who was female. Turns out that 5 of our eight peeps were dudes. Bummer. So we finally got around to finding four of the roosters a new home on an island in the Puget Sound. We took them, one per box on the ferry to meet their new owner about a month ago.

Our remaining rooster finally began crowing yesterday, talk about a late bloomer! Shortly after we handed the roosters off, we had a raccoon attack in middle of the night. It grabbed one of my hens right off her roost and pulled her across the yard to a tree right by my front door where it tried to pluck out her feathers to get to the flesh underneath, all while she was alive and clucking for help. The rooster followed the raccoon and hen to the tree and had no idea what to do. I then heard the ruckus and thought in my sleep that it was weird for chickens to make so much noise in middle of the night. So I leaped out of bed, ran to the door, tried to go out forgetting the door was locked, unlocked it, ran outside, and couldn’t understand what I was seeing.

It was about then that I fully woke up. When it dawned on me what I was seeing (literally 1-2 seconds, but it felt like forever), I started screaming like my best friend was being murdered in front of me. The screaming scared the raccoon, the hen, the rooster, the boyfriend still asleep inside, and our guest that was spending the night. The raccoon, realizing the jig was about and he might be about to lose what had originally appeared to be an easy meal,  then tried to drag my hen up the tree with him.

It was at that point that I started hitting the raccoon with my bare hands(he was about eye level on the tree trunk). I’d like to take this moment to let everyone know that I have no idea how to hit something, anything. I was hitting like the proverbial girl in the movies, with my hands all wavy and flappy in front of me, and my head turned back like my face was about to have an angry, hungry raccoon launched at it.

As soon as he dropped the hen, she bolted to the other end of the yard and hid so well we couldn’t find her and presumed she died of shock somewhere. The rooster also ran away (I might have kicked him out of the way, I can’t remember) was cowering in a different corner, and the raccoon was trapped in the tree. We tried hosing it out of the tree, but it just climbed higher. We eventually left a baited trap for it and went inside, but as soon as we left, he slipped down the other side of the tree and disappeared. Not surprisingly, we haven’t seen him since.

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