Something got into the chicken coop and killed one of the Dominques last night. They are the smaller black & white birds. When I went out this morning to let the chickens out, I noticed that some of the girls were already outside. Their small door was closed but the big door was open. My heart skipped a beat. Keith yelled for me to check to see if all chickens were present and accounted for. Sure enough, one of the chickens was killed and ripped apart lying under the roost. Oddly, there were several birds still sitting on the roost - the sun wasn't quite up yet. They did seem stressed and didn't want to move. I wanted to make sure everyone was ok so I shooed them out to make sure all their wings and legs were functioning.
I don't know what happened. I was sure that I locked the door when I put the girls up for the night, but maybe I didn't. The wind was blowing pretty hard so if I didn't have it latched all the way, perhaps it blew open and the something got in. It could be that something got in through the chickens' door as there is a gap big enough for a weasel or weasel-sized rodent. Keith is going to try and get that fixed today. I wouldn't be surprized if egg production goes back down. They tend to lay fewer eggs after a tramatic experience.
Ugh...I really don't know how anyone raises animals for a living. Every time I lose one, my heart just breaks. I question what I could have done to prevent something like this from happening. I just feel awful. They are my responsibility and when something liek this happens I feel as though I have failed them.