Mar 9, 2013

feeding the mammals through the winter

keeping chickens continues to gain in popularity.  by now i am not at all surprised and less and less distraught over someone's story of how all their chickens were killed/stolen/eaten by some predator (in one case, the family dog).  you don't see many chickens past egg-laying age.

a few weeks ago during a neighborhood party chicken conversation, someone was listing with great interest the things that had gotten their chickens over the past couple of years -- ermines or minks, fishers, weasels, owls, hawks, coyotes, bobcats, and mostly, the mama fox who lives and raises her families nearby.

and then it dawned on me -- keeping chickens can be a lot like keeping a bird feeder -- it's a small mammal feeder!  it helps the animals we love so much make it through the winter, and provides wildlife spotting opportunities for the owners.  i do believe many chicken owners love the fox and her kits even more than they do their chickens, especially once they are over the stage of naming the chicks.

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