Did I make a big mistake???

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Paradise Peckers, Oct 22, 2009.

  1. Paradise Peckers

    Paradise Peckers New Egg

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    Oct 22, 2009
    Big Island
    About a year ago I was adopted by a wild, half-blind, partially-crippled, runt of a nacked-neck Roo, I've named Rosco. He spends sun up to sun down in my yard, now eats out of my hand, and follows me around the garden like I'm his mama.
    [​IMG]

    So 2 1/2 weeks ago I inherited one very large chicken and one even larger roo of unknown breed. Have named them Fred & Ethel (as in, Mertz).
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    [​IMG]
    I kept them in an enclosure, which they could have flown out of for the first week. On day five Ethel began her once a day egg laying, so I figured she was getting acclimated to her new home. Day seven she flys out, but stays near Fred so I take down the fencing and they calmly hang out near their new home. Fred makes no notice of Rosco, however when he wanders within 15 feet of Rosco, Rosco clucks and screeches loudly until I come to him. After 2 days all settles again and both roos are happily pecking around the yard with 5 feet of each other. Meantime, Ethel has stopped laying eggs in the coop, whch I have been taking, and laying in an unprotected nest she made in the yard. I took those eggs too, thinking I am too new at this to let her hatch them.

    So, now the problem. Yesterday at 5pm I went out to check on them and all three are still happily pecking around the yard. I checked Ethels yard nest and found one egg, which I took. At 6pm I went back outside to feed Fred & Ethel and herd them into the coop and Ethel is no where to be found. The only predator they could possibly have would be a dog, however I've never seen a loose dog around here. I never heard any ruckus, haven't seen any blood or stray feathers. Have searched everywhere and can't find hide nor tail feather. I've even searched in the forest, but it's so thick in there that the wild boar can hide so I think it would be easy for me to miss her.

    Since I've had her, she has always stayed with Fred and never left the yard. Could she have just gotten lost? Or is she hiding and protecting her eggs, not even coming out for food? Is the brooding instinct so strong that I freaked her out by taking all her eggs?

    I'm very worried about her so any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Mahalo
     
  2. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 31, 2009
    SouthEast Texas
    Sometimes they get spooked by something and hide really well for a while. I hope she's o.k.

    Was she showing signs of actually going broody? Like sitting on the nest all day? If she was, then yes, it's possible that she found a better place to hide her eggs.

    For future reference, it's a good idea to leave a fake egg in the place where you want them to lay. Then you can take the real eggs, and they won't change their nesting spot.
     
  3. crzychknluvr

    crzychknluvr Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 6, 2009
    The great northwest
    I really really hate to even mention this, but you said it's forested where you are? A hawk will take off w/ a chicken for dinner! An owl will also prey on chickens.
    I sincerely hope that this didn't happen.[​IMG]
    It could also be that she found a good place to roost.[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2009
  4. Paradise Peckers

    Paradise Peckers New Egg

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    Oct 22, 2009
    Big Island
    GOOD NEWS!! SHE'S BAAAACK!! I swore I could hear her cooing in the forest, but couldn't locate her. Just went out for another search and she's by the coop with Fred. Have no idea what happened to her, but she is missing feathers on her right side and is mildly skittish. I can't see any blood or visible cuts so I think she will be OK.

    Ethel is about 15-18 lbs. so I think she would be too large for the hawaiian hawk to get her. Mongoose only steal eggs and babies and know enough to stay far away from a full grown chicken. Same with cats. Although there is one small cat who has stalked Rosco. I think it's because Rosco is sooo tiny and handicapped. Anytime that cat comes around though Rosco sounds the alarm and I come running. Besides I can't imagine that cat being dumb enough to go after Ethel. A dog would be my only concern, and feral dogs are just not a problem in my area. I suppose it is a possibility that one of the neighbors hunting dogs got loose, but that's never been an issue before.

    I'll have to keep an eye out and hope this will just be an isolated incident.

    Thank you for your help.
     
  5. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 31, 2009
    SouthEast Texas
    Quote:I'm SO SO SO glad to hear it!!!!!

    Sounds like she had a close call. Good to hear she's o.k.!
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  6. vnploveschickens

    vnploveschickens Chillin' With My Peeps

    [​IMG] Aloha! You'll have a great time here!!

    I'm so happy to hear that Ethel has returned, and all 3 are getting along!


    You might want to make your coop alot more secure to protect against preditors.
     
  7. coopdepallet

    coopdepallet New Egg

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    Oct 14, 2009
    I'm glad she's back. I was thinking she went broody and have been laying eggs somewhere. It happens.[​IMG]
     
  8. RevaVirginia

    RevaVirginia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm really confused on this one...Are you absolutely certain that white rooster isn't a Linebacker for some football team somewhere?
     
  9. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    DFW
    Yaa! A happy ending. I love those.
     
  10. Robin'sBrood

    Robin'sBrood Flock Mistress

    May 8, 2008
    North Carolina
    Those big chickens can fly? [​IMG] I have a big ol' Cornish Rock hen named Maude (her sister, Ethel, died about a month ago [​IMG] ) and she is too big and clumsy to even think about flying.

    Glad your Ethel is home safe and sound. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2009

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