This morning, I found Martha in the little nest I made her last night, curled up and cold. Martha had died in the night, before I had even gotten the chance to try to help her. I noticed she wasn't well last night, but only at roost time. I figured there was no use in trying anything by then, and I planned to try to help her today. Martha had been behaving like she was brooding for the past week or so. As Martha didn't often brood, I didn't know that her behavior was actually out of the ordinary for her. She just wanted to sit in the back of a nest box all day. She never growled or fluffed out, but I figured Martha, as she had always been quiet and shy, was just being Martha and brooding in her own way. This was the first picture I ever took of Martha: When we first got our three golden Sebrights, I didn't know what to think. They were pretty shy at first, but before long, they found their place in the flock. Those little banties, my very first little banties... Before I knew it, they had run right in and stole my heart, and they're so small and adorable that I just let them. It was heartbreaking that I couldn't do anything for Martha, not even to make her more comfortable in her last hours. Martha may have been quiet, but she did have some attitude to her: Martha, when she did brood and made me pull her out of the nest and put her in the broody-away pen, would always have a dissatisfied look: When she sunbathed, Martha would always make it look so comfortable: Yes, Martha made sunbathing look good: Martha only roosted in the rafters a couple times, but I was fortunate enough to get some pictures of her dusty little butt up there: Martha knew I intended to get her down from the rafters that evening and had to try to intimidate me away: (Martha was far too cute to be intimidating, though.) During the winter, my Sebrights have a tendency to go insane, and Martha was no exception: (Martha is the kung-fu banty in the air, wings out.) She was still a little cutie between her bouts with insanity: This was the last picture I took of Martha, snuggled up next to barred rock Diana: Unfortunately, she was most likely just coming down with whatever killed her in this picture (it was just after pulling her out from a nest box earlier this week). Martha was one of the hardest birds to lose from my flock. I spent most of the morning blaming myself and it just tore me up inside. But after burying her and having some time to sit with the rest of the flock, I have come to the conclusion that there was nothing I could have done. I know Martha had a great life here for the two years she was with us, and most importantly, she was loved. Martha will be greatly missed, but I could never forget that quiet, yet sassy little beauty that up and ran off with a piece of my heart.