Farm Farm

And the Spring Predator Loss Begins

I’ll try not to dwell on this, but it’s an unfortunate fact of farm life.

Late last week there was a raccoon wandering around the edge of our property in the afternoon, Now a raccoon out during the daytime means a) it’s rabid or b) it’s got young to feed. Either one isn’t good. I set the dog out after it and it wandered up the hill across the street. I knew it would be back though, and I’ve been keeping a watchful eye out.

Monday morning my husband was leaving for work and called me on his cell to say that there was a dead chicken at the edge of the next-door neighbor’s property. I went out and discovered one of my Buff Orpington hens, head removed and body ripped open. I suspect somebody driving by scared the thing off. Poor little thing. I have a few Buff’s, and they are lovely, gentle birds and good layers.

It makes me so damned mad. Unfortunately our town does not allow the discharge of guns of any kind, or I can assure you I would happily blow its head off.

Tonight when I did a head count at lock up I was down another hen. I may just sit out there and rip his head off with my bare hands.

On a lighter note, and I certainly hope nobody was eating when they read that, I’ll show you some farm photos I took today.

This is the view from my computer desk. The old chicken coop  has a sunny front porch that is a favorite lounging spot for the goats. Today I caught all 4 of them having an afternoon siesta, and I got the photo through the window.

And Rocky seems to get bigger every day. He’s starting to crow more, which is unfortunate — for him mostly — as I won’t be able to keep him if he starts making too much noise. It wasn’t like he did any good keeping the raccoon away, right?

Rocky surveying his domain.

And I am telling you, Gracie is the happiest goat alive. She always appears to be smiling.

A Smiling Gracie


  1. Try a Have-a-heart trap with a plate of wet dog food. Then relocate or give to animal control who may put it down. You don’t want a rabid animal around.

    • Lisa, I didn’t even think of this. I had one in the shed, and I set it out tonight. Keep your fingers crossed for a successful catch tonight.

  2. I am so sorry that you lost two chicken children. Growing up, it was the skunks and dogs that killed ours and it was hard not to want to kick the dogs really hard. How is Cheena?

    • Thanks Leilani. Skunks and dogs are awful too. We lost 10 chickens to a dog a few years back, and lose one on occasion still. Leash laws have helped a lot in that area.

  3. Oh what a sin – I’m afraid I wouldn’t have the heart for life on farm!

    • It’s sad to say, but you develop a bit of a “farm mentality” over time. Cycle-of-life sort of stuff. It still is hard though all these years later.

  4. Probably one of the buffs that I hatched myself back in the day – those darn coons! 🙁 I don’t like the sound of this one bit…

    • I forgot I had a Have-A-Heart trap in the shed, so I’ve set that up tonight! No predator losses when Cyrena’s on farm duty!

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