the hungry fox

Jul 22, 2013

Fisher has been raising fourteen baby chicks since the end of March and has done so, so well. This little boy has gotten up all by himself and fed and watered and loved on his chicks every day. He has mucked out the coop and filled it with clean hay. He has done all of it without reminders. He comes into my room around 7:00 a.m. and gives me a report on how his chickens are doing. It is so cute. The first week of July they started laying and one day when Scott was here he got 12 eggs. Talk about exciting! The older chickens he has hardly lay at all and he has done a gob of work without many rewards from them. He has completely proven himself to be a responsible chicken owner.

Now tragedy has struck. While I was gone on my trip, we had a little red visitor at our house who dug and slithered and snuck his way into the chicken coop and killed almost all of Fisher’s chickens.

Oh my. The tears that were shed upon our return home could have filled a pond. When this little guy cries, it is whole-soul-sobbing. He loves his bugs and animals so much that it breaks his heart when they die. Having almost all of his flock decimated about did him in. Richard and Fisher talked and talked and talked and snuggled and snuggled and searched for the fox and many tears later Fisher came in the house to talk to me about it.

“Mom, that fox has never been so desperate before. I am thinking he has a wife and a family of children that he needs to take care of. That is why he is so desperate. Tomorrow I am going to spend the whole day guarding my chickens. I don’t think he will be brave enough to come get them if I am there. He was only brave enough because I was gone.”

Words of wisdom in that boy.

The next day we found nine one-year old hens for $20 (a smoking deal!) and brought them home. His heart is healing as he loves on them. I can never decide how I feel about these life lessons. They are so painful to go through, but I hope they will make him a better man.

Yesterday he even got four eggs!

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  1. Oh dear. Love and loss. A hard thing at any age.

  2. Oh Fisher! We are certain we’ve never had a chicken loss because of our dogs. We’ve even seen chicken hawks circling above, but they never land, Azzo & Lucy are just too intimidating. Could one of Sadie’s pups become a chicken guard dog? Or did you sell them all?

    • tracy

      Sadie was in the house sleeping when the fox came…not much of a guard dog, eh? Her pups are all gone to their new homes. I think Richard and Fisher have successfully fixed all the places the fox got into, but who knows, he is a smart and determined fox.

  3. This whole situation is so heart-breaking. I am so excited to hear that you found such a great deal on some chickens to help fill the hole in Fisher’s heart!

    • tracy

      So many tears…but he is recovering.

  4. Mindy

    What a sweet boy. He has a heart of gold!

    • tracy

      Yes, a heart of gold nails it on the head. He is such a kind, tender-hearted boy. I think he would fight to the death to defend one of his animals, but only out of love, not out of a desire for violence. I want to wrap him in my arms and keep him this way forever.

  5. Cosette

    What an amazing person Fisher is. He had empathy for his enemy. I am just astounded at that!