I am sad, if I were to say differently I would be lying. This morning when I went out to the chicken coop to give the girls more water and food I noticed that Dorothy, our Gold Laced Wyandotte was lying on the bottom of the coop underneath where the hens perch at night, and she was not moving. Actually I could tell right away that she was no longer living by the position that she was lying in. I grabbed a bag and began to inspect her to see if there was any signs of a predatory attack but could not find anything out the ordinary. I am obviously no expert when it comes to poultry deaths, I just looked for anything that might help me understand what happened. The other two chickens, Rose and Blanch, were carrying on with their normal morning routines as if nothing had changed. I know that sometimes chickens just die, like everything else, it is just sad when the reality hits you on a wet fall morning like today. I am glad that we didn’t have to see her suffer, and can only hope that she didn’t suffer long. As a matter of fact she looked just fine last night when I checked on them before going to bed.
Dorothy was almost two in a half years old. She was the shyest chicken out of the three and often kept to herself. She laid the largest eggs, which we will miss, and was perhaps the prettiest bird in the coop with her gold and dark brown markings. I hate to say it, but she was indeed my favorite of the three because of the way she carried herself. She always had a raspy call that you could distinguish from the other hens. Kind of like an old female jazz singer in a smokey lounge, or a female radio DJ on a late night radio show. We developed a special bond when I saved her from the Hawk attack almost a year ago during her first molt. After that she would always come up to me if I called her, where before she would run away. She lived a pretty good life considering how most poultry are raised. Her favorite treats were red winger worms from the compost bin and fresh tomatoes from the garden.
I am glad that Eli is not old enough to understand what happened today. We laid her to rest deep in the garden where she will always be remembered. Needless to say we are going to keep a close eye on the other two hens to make sure that nothing is wrong.