GOOD NEWS!!!!!!!!!!!!! All 9 are HOME! My husband went out this morning hoping to find them, he came in excited saying he could hear them on the other side of the fence! I ran out and he lifted me up (8 foot privacy fence) and I counted ALL 9! They were all there huddled together! Rather than waking our neighbors and chasing chickens around their yard, we broke off two boards showed them their waterer and they all filed through very quickly! They were all very happy to be back in their own yard, running, flying and chasing each other around. I am elated and so relieved to have them home! I suspected the worse but I am so grateful that now I only need to replace some boards in our fence rather than all of our chickies! Not to mention how excited our 6 year old will be when she wakes up to find all of her chicks are home safe!
Now the mystery of how they managed to get themselves stuck on the other side of the fence. But we've learned our lesson and will be locking them up anytime we leave. Thank you all for your concern and helpful posts!!!
YEAH! Young pullets can be good fliers and may have jumped the fence or found a hole. Check the bottom of your fence to see if there is a spot they could slide under. If they are going over you might consider clipping their wings. As long as you are careful not to hit a blood feather (have septic medicine or flour ready just in case) it doesn't hurt them. I do this with my young pullets since my fence is only 3 feet. If I convince them when they are young I usually have no more trouble with them jumping the fence. (of course there is always one that does it anyway.....) Congrats on them all coming home!