The Lord works in mysterious ways. A few days after the RIR pulled off his personal Pearl Harbor attack I was working on the coop and inadvertantly left a place he could hop up onto and then hop over the fence, which he did. My dog Whitey, a genuine Heinz 57, then pounced on him. End of RIR. I didn't get mad at Whitey because he just did what nature put inside him to do. Besides, Whitey and I have a gentleman's agreement that anything inside the pen is off limits, but if it gets out it is fair game. This is how I learned about the advantages of clipping flight feathers. Anyway, ol' Rooster Cogburn now roosts in the great coop in the sky and I get to go pick out a replacement next week when the hardware store gets a new shipment in. I think a flock of 10 hens needs a rooster around to maintain the expected social order, and I do love hearing one crow in the morning. Thanks to all who posted thoughts and tips in response to my original post.