We had our four chickens for just over 2 months before a fox got to them this morning.
I got to know these little creatures and watch each of their personalities grow into something special. Dot LOVED weeds from the garden, she'd nip weeds out of the others beaks just to get her fix.
Henrietta loved bananas and was the chatty one of them all. Snowy was the little bossy one, the highest of the pecking order and the first one to let me cuddle her.
Shaniqua was sassy and an absolute scaredy cat. Most of the feathers I found in their little home this morning were from her, I think she put up the biggest fight last night.
I'd walk up and down the coop, and they would follow. They'd greet me whenever I go to say hello in our usual spot, where I'd pull up a chair and feed them seeds out of my hands. Once, I played soft jazz out loud on my phone, Shaniqua got all cosy and nodded off, before I woke her up again from giggling.
They'd be fussy with their food, they would only eat certain weeds, they'd turn their nose up at broccoli and occasionally shout the garden down when they laid an egg.
It took a while for two of them to get to know us, but I loved watching them come out of their shell. One time it rained so heavy and they decided they wanted to be outside cuddled up in the corner, not sheltered from the rain at all. I picked up each one of them and popped them in the coop one by one, so they could be safe and dry.
Another time I sat in the coop with them, wearing my Doc Martens, Dot and Henrietta thought my shoelaces were worms, which made me laugh so much!
The first day we got them, we were trying to make their run as secure as we could. There were two huge composers that Snowy wanted to go near so desperately, she got herself wedged between them on that first day and I had to unstick her.
We decided it's best to empty the compost out and let them have a rummage, she sat on my knee patiently watching them get removed! After that, there were no more crazy attempts at getting to that end of the garden and I realized that Snowy was actually just curious at what they were.
When they first were introduced to their run, I cried a little, so happy that I could protect these little creatures. They made me as happy as I think I made them.
I'm utterly heartbroken. I hope it was quick and painless and that they know how loved they were.
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