Doctoring Copper

Mr. Knightly turned into Mr. Knaughty when Copper came back to the coop injured. I was shocked! But I know these chickens are just birds with their own ingrown instincts, and with Copper obviously weakened, Mr. Knightly became the top rooster.

To protect Copper and be sure that he would have time to recuperate without being bothered by Mr. Knightly we decided to put him in a cage by himself. We found him in the barn standing in the warmth of the early morning sun…

Copper 1

His right eye seemed injured and there were some small scratches and a little blood on his right wattle. My daughter Sarah daubed iodine on anything that looked like a cut, but we couldn’t really see anything too serious. I was mostly concerned about his eye, as he kept it shut, but when it was open it was black, not orange like it should be.

Copper 2

We put straw in the cage and water with colloidal silver in it and some food in a tray. He drank a little water, but hasn’t touched the food…

Copper 3

I think it is perfectly natural for animals and birds to not eat when they are not feeling well.

The hens came around making little cooing noises and actually hung out with Copper for a long time…

Copper 4

Even Mr. Knightly paid him a visit and showed a little compassion…

Copper 5

As the day wore on Copper went from sleeping standing up with his head tucked under his feather’s to lying down in the straw. In the afternoon I opened the door to the cage, but he didn’t move. We decided to cover the cage with a tarp and let him sleep by himself for the night. I hope he will be better in the morning.

I  hung a jacket and placed a pair of barn boots near the chicken coop to further deter whatever predator was lurking around…

rake

Kind of a makeshift scarecrow…

While I was working outside, I was constantly looking down toward the chicken coop worried that the coyote would show up again… Just about lunch time, I noticed an animal running across the field toward the coop. I ran as fast as I could to the house and called for my son to help me. He ran down to the barn and scoped it out and told me it was just a cat.  I saw the cat slinking away across the pasture…

The more I thought about it the more I thought that maybe it was this cat that had attacked the chickens. We had a hard time finding any paw prints and that makes sense if it was a cat. It is just hard to believe that a cat could carry a big rooster like Copper, but that may have been the reason that he got away.

I looked on the internet for information about cats eating chickens. Perhaps this cat was a feral cat. For those of you who like me don’t know what that is, here is the definition…A feral cat is a descendant of a domestic cat that has returned to the wild.

pablo-picasso-wounded-bird-and-catPablo Picasso’s Wounded Bird and Cat

This is a scary painting. I came across it when I was doing my internet search. It convinced me that our predator could perhaps be a cat and not a coyote.

The traps are set and we will see if we capture something tonight.

In the meantime the other Welsummer hen never returned. I looked all over for any signs of her feathers, or other parts and have found nothing.

UPDATE:  Copper didn’t make it through the night. 😦

                     Nothing in the traps… 😦

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14 thoughts on “Doctoring Copper

  1. Gosh, I’m sorry. I’d like to share what I do about coyotes, so far it has worked great. LIGHT, I put a motion spot light near my coop and the coyotes run the minute it goes on.

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  2. Ohmigosh, I am so sad to hear about your beautiful rooster. The detective in me always wants to know why??? Shock? Internal injuries? Poor guy. I am so sorry to hear this. I had such hope. 😦

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    • I don’t know why. I do know there were a lot of piles of feathers lying around in different places. He may have really tried to fight whatever it was. He did look like he was in shock. My husband said it could have been internal injuries. But there was very little blood, so I just don’t know. I sure hope we catch whatever it was.

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      • Me too. Are you chickens free range all the time? I can only have mine out when I am home… But still, keep us updated… If it was a coyote, I think they are hard to catch. Hopefully your weekend will be good:)

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  3. I’m sorry to hear that you lost Copper. We have a cockerel who is half Welsummer and half black rock and very handsome just like your Copper was. He probably died from shock poor thing. Sorry to hear your other hen is still missing too, perhaps long gone now.

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