Living and Learning in the Pacific Northwest
We had an incident today that got my heart pumping. Last month a coyote got one of our chickens and several of the neighbors chickens. The other neighbor saw the coyote carrying a chicken in its mouth. We also found the leg of a fawn the same day. Today, I could hear a chicken(s) screaming, which sounds like a child’s strangled screams. The kids were in the house so I thought it was the coyote getting another chicken.
It is the wrong time of day for coyotes to hunt but wild animals are not following their normal behavior patterns. My friend saw a cougar near her house at noon this summer, and six cougars were trapped in two months on the same farm. In march two male cougars were trapped within a couple of miles and couple of hours of each other. Male cougars have a territory of 150 miles so this is highly unusual.
Anyhow, intending to scare off the coyote, I rushed out with a racket in each hand. I told the boys to stay in the house but, of course, they trailed after me. I discovered a strange dog chewing on one of our chickens through the fence and I could hear the neighbor’s visiting daughter calling his name from her Dad’s yard. When Kelly put up the fence to protect the chickens from the coyote(s), he did not want to cut the fence, so he coiled it (see pic). Two poor chickens wedged themselves in the coil trying to find safety which only gave the dog better access to them.
Pandemonium ensued as kids came running, neighbor came running, and our dogs came running to fight off the invader. She was trying to talk to me to apologize for her dog and holding her dog near the chicken fence. I suggested she move her dog away from the chicken pen and I gathered our dogs to put them in the house. Meanwhile the kids were scrambling up the treehouse because I gave them the “what for.”
My heart is still feeling kinda funny and this was about an hour ago. Our boys need to learn to stay put when we tell them to stay put. We need to have a fire drill of sorts for emergencies like this. There are cougar and black bear in our the area too, spotted within 15 miles.
Henry was upset and wanted to tend to his chicken. She went into the coop where I cannot reach her. Here are the poor girlies hiding in the coop and the coyote scat we found last week.
I signed up a while back for the Outdoor Challenge Mondays by 5 Orange Potatoes. I hope to get back into regular nature posts– at least every Monday.