It doesn't help that I have broody hens with a tendency to commit infanticide.
Then I noticed that when I once had twenty six chickens (twenty hens and six roosters), I now only have a total of nineteen chickens (fourteen hens and five roosters). Less hens, less eggs.
I was hoping to increase our flock numbers by letting Broody #2 sit on a clutch of 16 eggs. The broody hen that I made that special, secure, fluffy private nest for has decided she no longer wants to sit on them. Yesterday I found her in the nest box, but off the clutch of eggs. And five of them were missing. I was thinking it was time to lop her head off, but I'm glad I delayed my initial "stupid chicken I'm gonn'a stew your pathetic butt" reaction.
Because there may have been a valid reason for her leaving the nest, and it may not have been her that was eating the eggs in her clutch.
I found this bugger up in the rafters of the hen house. S/he was curled up pretty tight so instead of trying to yank it's hefty looking mass of muscle out of the rafters I had Paul get out a pistol loaded with aptly-named snake shot (remind me to buy some more).
Didn't look that big up in the rafters until I started to pull it's mortally wounded, yet still very much alive body out of there. One more shot to the head and it was lights-out for this egg eating reptile.
|Rhiannon and one egg, Mommy and one Black Snake.|