Almost one year to the day I got them (when they were only 6 weeks old) I had my first predator attack last night. Both of my buff orpingtons go to the coop for the night and I lock them every night before bedtime. Almost every night, the coop remains open for few hours after the ladies settle in for the night. Well, last night was different. I heard a commotion outside but did not immediately realize what’s going on. I proceeded toward the coop with an intention to lock it for the night only to notice bunch of feathers spread out on the yard and one chicken clucking nervously. The other was … gone! Well, something snatched it and I had no idea where she was! I immediately grabbed the surviving chicken and took it inside (to calm her) and started searching the area. I peaked behind the shed (where I thought I heard some chain link fence rattling) toward the neighbor’s backyard and… found her! She was lying on her side, not moving. I immediately thought that she was dead but fortunately, she was not. She looked very shaken up, with bunch of feathers lying around. Upon further examination, I did not find any bite marks or open skin injuries. Kept her calm in my arms for about 30 – 45 minutes trying to make sure she is calm. I did put her back into the coop. This morning, she appeared to be a bit slower than normal but otherwise ok. I will of course keep a close eye on her to make sure she recovers fully. I have no idea what kind of predator this was. A stray cat? Fox? Raccoon? I am sort of ruling out the last two as I would imagine either would kill her on the spot and drag her body away. Well, lesson learned here… from now on I will be locking up the coop the moment both girls are in.