She was one of the unnamed “orange girls”. A red sexlink from the 2021 cohort.
And she’d been looking kind of “hunchy” for a couple days, but I already had another girl in my “sick bay”, so I was just keeping an eye on her.
But yesterday morning I went out to do morning critter duties and as I approached the gate, a big bald eagle came into view, having breakfast amidst a carpet of orange feathers. I gave a yell, and he took off, carrying what little remained of the poor chicken.
Once I’d fed everyone else, I went over to clean up the crime scene, and came across an interesting, if gross, artifact which speaks to what had been ailing this chicken.
I have since discovered that this what is called a “lash egg“. First time I’d seen this sort of thing.
Clearly the eagle knew he didn’t want any part of that, and left it for me to clean up. But it means that she’d been suffering from a bacterial infection of the oviduct for some time.
So she was clearly compromised and probably an easy target for a hungry eagle. Poor girl.
It does wonder how she picked up the infection, and think that I should probably do a deep cleaning of the nesting boxes.
The other girl I have in sick bay is eating well and seems to be improving, so fingers crossed that she’ll be back up to speed and able to re-joing the genpop soon.
On a brighter note, tomato babies are looking strong and perky
as are the various dye plants
Many of the little peppers I’d started in late February were lost to the recent cold spell, so I’ve sown a few more of each type to see if I can get another batch started. I’ve still got the overwintered guys (jalepeno, blot, sheepnose pimento) that I’m counting on for a strong performance this year, but was really hoping to do a side-by side comparison of productivity between first year and second year plants.
Alrighty that’s all I’ve got. I’ll sign off this week with a few words from Yellow Chig
I am so sorry about your hen. I have never seen lash egg either.
thanks Donna- been quite a while since we’ve had an eagle attack. really caught me off guard.