A Thief In The Night

| 3/15/2019 2:21:00 PM

Tags: chickens, Opossum, dogs,

farm signIn cold weather my dogs like to sleep inside. They usually don't stir at all until morning, but a few nights ago, Huckey woke me up around 2:00 am. I thought it was just the call of nature, but when I opened the door, I heard frantic squawking from the chicken yard.

Huckey shot out and Beau nearly knocked me down following. I jammed my bare feet into my mud boots, grabbed my gun and shells and followed.

In the chicken yard I found a small pile of feathers, but no body. I entered, carefully locked the gate after me, and looked around. There was no evidence of a body, and all the chickens were crammed into the top level of the nesting tower. I thought about chicken predators and which ones do not leave a body behind. Foxes, bobcats, coyotes, owls, and here I was locked in the pen with them in only my PJs and mud boots.

pile of feathers

I shined my light around the perimeter to look for signs of egress and when I found none, I took a deep breath and opened the chicken house door. From the other side of the gate, Beauregard silently watched and shook like a leaf. He is terrified of guns, but for my sake he would not leave. Huckey had no such qualms. I could just see him peering out from under the back porch. He had done his part by raising the alarm and that would have to be sufficient.

I carefully entered the chicken house and shined my light around. Nothing obvious presented itself, so I began to shine the light in hidden areas. And there he was, Mr. Possum, hiding under a shelf that used to hold nesting boxes, but now serves as a roost.

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