Sunday, July 10, 2011

Choose your own adventure

I woke up this morning at 6:00 to the awful sound of panicked chickens. I looked out our bedroom window and to my horror saw a coyote in the chicken run with a white Cornish rooster dangling from the coyotes mouth. The worse part was the damn coyote smiled at me with the dangling chicken in his mouth. It was just like the chicken scenes in Fantastic Mr. Fox.

Once I gathered my senses I darted outside in my underwear like a mad man screaming bloody murder and ran right for the coyote. He escaped just like in the movies. I am measurably slower without coffee. So here is the bizarre part.... Our chickens are always locked up secure and happy, but this morning the latched outside door was opened and the flock was meandering freely around our gardens.

So here is the part you need to vote on. 1. Did a coyote figure out how to open the secured latch on our chicken door and break in? 2. Did somebody break into our coop in the middle of the night and casually leave the door open in their pursuit of farm fresh organic eggs?
3. Did the wind mysteriously blow the latch to the door open for the first time in year attracting our sinister menace? Note: It was closed the night before. 4. Did aliens looking for intelligent life forms bypass our house in the middle of the night and head straight for the chicken coop to perform their experiments? There were no identifiable crop circles in the morning. So go ahead and cast your vote, or come up with your own scenarios. Help us solve this annoying mystery. The hens are depending on you!


  1. I am wondering what sort of lock, hook, or bolt? Raccoons can open any sort of lifting lock. But a coyote? Is your coop enclosed within a hen yard? We have our chicken coop inside the hen yard with a chicken wire roof. A family of Cooper hawks nest in the trees in the adjacent canyon, so we knew we needed a roof to protect the chicks. But the thought of a coyote attack . . . well, it scares me! I hear them howling most nights.They must know the chickens are there. I have heard that if you mark the territory (perimeter) coyotes/predators will stay away. My 5 year old son loves this idea!
    Good Luck with your birds :)
    Cynthia @ Farm Urbana (Encanto)

  2. That's a good question! I automatically thought raccoon, too. It's a gate lock, one of those with a straight rod that clips into the other part when the door closes. You definitely have to lift it up to open the door and it's too complicated for a coyote. I think either we left it not quite latched and it slid opened, or a raccoon opened it and the coyotes came by later. Thanks for your comment!