Hey, it’s Camille again, I’m back to explain to you why I’ve been so quiet these past few weeks.
Mid october, Gaëlle had a few eggs left in her incubator and I had broody hens at home but no eggs…we decided to put the eggs under my hens and the little miracle happened, I soon welcomed adorable baby chicks into the world.
If you are following us, you’ve probably noticed how important these little guys were to us, we were really looking forward to seeing them grow…Unfortunately, things didn’t go as planned 🙁
A month ago, I had ‘tucked’ my chickens in for the night, kissed one of my favorite chicks and went home, a few meters away from the coop.
My chicken coop is built in an old shed with stone walls and everything inside is homemade to fit our chicken’s needs.
However, there’s one thing I’ve neglected all these years.
Between the walls and the roof are some very small holes. I never thought they’d be big enough for any predator to come through but that very night, an intruder managed to get in…
The next morning, my 4 year-old son left the house to open the coop in order for our chickens to spend a nice day out. He came running back to the kitchen shouting :
‘Maman, Lynda’s dead, come quick !’
I’ll never forget what I saw. There they were, my lovely little chickens, my friends, laying on the ground, either beheaded or bled to death.
I lost all my best hens, the great and friendly ones I talked to you about in the last articles, GONE.
What a shock…I immediately searched for the chicks, hoping to find survivors but I quickly understood that I was losing my time.
This bloody and violent attack was led by several individuals, it’s impossible for 1 animal to eat all 12 chicks in one go. I carefully checked their injuries and I had to face the obvious, my pet chickens had been killed by polecats.
The predator had to enter by a small hole, polecats (wild ferrets) can sneak in a tiny hole.
They usually eat small prey (the chicks for example) and behead their victims. If there are many of them them drain their blood through two small holes in the neck, like vampires…
I wasn’t careful enough, after keeping chickens safe for 4 years in this coop I had lowered my guard down too much 🙁
I have a few lucky survivors, including my wonderful rooster Alma but they’re all very traumatised and still don’t want to sleep in this place. I lock them up tight every night and hope this nightmare is over for now.
Hope & future
My husband has promised to build me a secured, predator-proof chicken coop in january, until then, I’m very careful.
I treasure the surviving ones and hope spring and its sunny days will bring me little fluffy balls of joy.
This tragic story devastated me and I was unable to talk about chickens for a long while, I’m now back and happy to translate Gaëlle’s articles again.
I want to thank her for her support during these difficult times, we really need a friend in those terrible moments.
I dedicate this article to my dearest : Lynda, Scarlett, Abby, Birdy, Cosette, Pearl, Peanut, Blacky, Jazzy, Jwayi, Janka, Jalma, Jahpi and the other little ones that didn’t have a name yet.