.. O. M. G. So, the raccoons have decided that my chickens are completely safe after dark in their coop. What do they do? They start coming out before dark ... I've lost two pullets this week just before dusk, as the chickens are beginning to roost. Last night, I started 'up the hill' a bit earlier than usual and heard the commotion. Screaming - and chickens running everywhere. I bolted up the hill, losing my shoes somewhere along the way. Then I see him, with Uno (my SF hen) in his mouth. He slips effortlessly over a fallen tree and starts into the woods. I reach down, pick up a sizable piece of tree branch, yell at him "HEY, (blank)" (my language can be atrocious when I'm angry) ... and threw the branch. It missed him, but he dropped Uno - who ran as fast as she could back to me and tried to hide between my feet. I stared at the masked bandit for what seemed like forever .. and he slipped into the woods.. dejected and without his meal. DH finally arrived with the .22 and watched while I gathered up the scatter group and made sure they were safely in the coop. Uno had a bloody face (he had her by the head), but seems otherwise un-affected. I.NEED.A.DOG. We have decided that our Last-hour-of-the-day duty is now to sit outside in camos and pick off raccoons ..