I Heart Indies

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Chickens Under Attack

Artist's Recreation
The other day my chicken Sorche was attacked by a hawk.  This event was very traumatic for everyone concerned; even the hawk did not emerge entirely unscathed.
The way it went down was in this manner.
Nancy heard a terrified squawking and ran outside - the chickens had already run to their pen, Sorche minus a good many tail-feathers, and somewhat scratched on her nether regions.  A hawk perched nearby staring into the pen with an intensity that can only be described as hawk-like.  Nancy could almost hear the hawk calculating how to get in there with the chickens and counting calories.  The chickens were in hysterics.  You don't know what hysterics are until you've seen chicken hysterics.
Nancy shouted at the hawk and threw rocks.  Parenthetically, I will add this is one of the reasons I love my wife.  There are women out there who would not throw a rock at a hawk.  Nancy is not one of those women.  Perhaps there are women out there who can hit a hawk with a rock; unfortunately, Nancy is not one of those women either.  On the other hand, I doubt if I could have hit it either, so who am I to judge.
Finally, the shouting accomplished what the rocks could not, and the hawk grudgingly flew off with an I'll-be-back sort of expression on its beak.
So what to do, I ask you.
Sorche, Minus Significant Plumage
Part of the point of raising free-range chickens is letting them range freely.  This indeed, would seem to be a sin qua non where free-range chickens are concerned.  But I don't intend raising chickens merely as fodder for any old passing hawks.  And while I fully respect that the hawk is a magnificent creature and has a place in the ecosystem, I don't see how that ecosystem legitimately includes eating my personal chickens nor do I find anything especially magnificent in chasing tame birds unable to fly and whose only defense is squawking as loudly as possible in the hope a rock-throwing woman will come to their aid.
So what to do?
I will also point out that it is against the law to discharge a firearm inside the county limits.  I already thought of that.
The Martin Ordinance
But here's what I'm thinking.  It's legal to shoot off fireworks in Georgia now.  Did you know that?  Nancy and I have a set of several skyrockets- still in their shrink-wrap - in a bedroom closet.  I'm pretty sure you didn't know that.
So next time that chicken-eating hawk shows up, I'm going to give him a sample of Hong Kong's Best and Brightest and see if I can't take a few tail feathers off him.
So what do you think all you folks in blog-reader land?
Shall I

1. Have the fireworks handy against the next advent of a hawk.
2. Keep the chickens in the pen and tell them freedom is the price they pay for security.
3. Get a shotgun in spite of local ordinances, plug that winged son-of-a-bitch and figure out what to say to the police later.
4. Get rid of the chickens and just buy my damn eggs at the Kroger like a normal person.

I await your collective wisdom.

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