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Chicken math

I did a little poultry math last night. I’ve been keeping chickens for ten years and I’ve had twenty chickens, eight of whom are still with us.

Four vanished without a trace. Three found dead in the run of a morning. Three died after a short illness. One died of violence, very likely at the beaks of her fellow chickens. One had a sort of chicken stroke and I had the vet put her down.

That’s her in the picture: Mapp, my very first chicken. Or second. I got two at once.

Mapp was a terrific chicken and lived to the ripe old age of eight, which is old for a bantam. I am prepared to put a suffering chicken down (though thank goodness I haven’t had to, yet), but I couldn’t do for old Mapp. I think the vet was surprised to be asked to euthanize a chicken, but he did a swift and competent job.

Good old Mapp. She never walked, she ran. Laid a few eggs in Spring and then went hard broody all Summer.

Crazy bird.


Comment from nbpundit
Time: May 19, 2020, 8:45 pm

Yours lasted much longer than mine. Hope you are well and still sane. Best from across the pond.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: May 19, 2020, 9:24 pm

Still? Still???

Comment from Mitch
Time: May 19, 2020, 11:30 pm

I remember Mapp. Violet too! Was she the one who suddenly couldn’t walk anymore?

Hush, Uncle B. We’re pining for the chooks.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 20, 2020, 6:52 pm

You’re probably thinking of Maggie, Mitch. She conked her spine (in panic, we think, when a fox came ’round) and her legs were paralyzed. She was otherwise apparently happy and alert, so I kept feeding her and giving her the occasional bath and she lived another 18 months.

I still get attacks of guilt that I didn’t have her put down or do it myself. But she just seemed so…okay.

Comment from Ed
Time: May 20, 2020, 11:55 pm

I’ve been thinking about raising some chickens, know how to make a coop. Problem being? Sometimes it gets below 0 around here. I can’t have them inside due to my cats. Any suggestions?

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