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"Life doesn't have to be perfect to be wonderful."
- Unknown

"That which does not kill you, makes you stronger."
- Handed down through the ages.

"Life's tough. It's even tougher when you're stupid."
- John Wayne

More Death & Disappointment

Cheery title, huh?

Son of Sam (that's my new name for my poultry predator) has struck again.  I was greeted by the half-eaten carcass of one of this spring's 15 Partridge Rocks at the gate into the chicken yard.  She was on the outside, so, flying over the 8' high fence, she must have escaped the carnage of the other day, only to be gotten in the last 24 hours.

As I entered the pen, I instantly saw that the cluster of ducks and geese was 2 ducks short - my two females, Mae being the only named one.  I said, out loud, "You two better be laying [on a nest] somewhere!"

Of course they weren't.

I walked the roughly 3600 square feet of the yard and found a chicken foot and leg underneath pine trees that had been splattered white by the many feces of a bird on a perch.  Looking up, I saw chicken feathers stuck to the limbs of the large cedar, apparently the favorite dining location of Son of Sam.

There was no sign of the two ducks, but maybe some will surface since Tucker presently brought out of the woods the other leg of that chicken, attached to her eaten body.

* * *

I've been sitting here a little while, watching the blinking cursor on this laptop screen and scratching Bonzi's head in order to prevent her from jumping onto my lap, i.e. the keyboard.  Dosie is laying on top of the rocker I'm in, snuggled against my back.

You know how people can take it and take it and take it until they finally snap?  That's what I feel like I'm dangerously close to right now, and I'm worried I'll take it out on one of the animals. 

This interruption brought to you by Jif peanut butter and 'Dancing With The Stars'. 

Okay, it's about 8 hours later now.  After I stopped writing, I took a freshly picked (relatively speaking) apple from my parents' yard and a jar of Jif (junky) peanut butter upstairs to the library.  I shut the door and blocked out all annoyances (i.e. cats and dogs). Then I watched 45 minutes of Tuesday night's 'Dancing With The Stars' (thanks for taping those for me, Mom).  Then I got my groove back on and went back to life here at Swamp River Ridge.

Also, I feel I should clarify.  When I said that I was worried that I might take my anger out on one of the animals, I certainly didn't mean that I would kick, beat or do other dastardly things . . . but I might holler.  And I hate it when I do that.  Anyway, just wanted to clear up any potential misunderstandings there.

The thing that really frustrated me about losing the two female ducks this morning is that it means a complete and total lack of eggs this coming winter.  It was upsetting enough, losing the chickens, but I knew I'd still have duck eggs since those two gals lay fairly regularly, year-round.

Anyway, I don't know - I'm just in a mood today.  I guess it shouldn't be a surprise, considering what's happened . . . just feels like it's been an awful lot lately.

Despite all of this, I did have a good and productive afternoon & evening.  I finally got my Halloween decorations out, and I got the living room all cleaned up . . . a task that had been nagging at me for a while.  Didn't get to the dishes, but I did get wood in and got a little more cleanup done around the woodshed.  Throw in some more vacuuming and dusting, some fighting with the washing machine, hauling a bunch of stuff out of the bed of the truck, and getting the repaired tire back on the car, and you have a synopsis of my day.  But, sigh, here we are at the end of it, and there was so much more I wanted to do . . . .


  1. Wow I'm sorry about all this! You sell those duck eggs too, don't you? Just terrible, how long after getting ducklings in the spring does it take for them to start laying again? If you were to get some already laying from someone selling them would they stop laying due to stress of moving? Some people would take offense, but I think I would take that predator out. At least where my parents live, they are like pigeons there, everywhere! And nobody would hear you do it, either! And that's coming from someone who wore eagles on my collar while serving in the military - hmph! When it comes to feeding my family and taking care of "home" I'm a mama bear!

  2. Oh gosh, I'm sorry to read that! I know how you feel about snapping though. I've done it and yelled at my animals. Once or twice. They're all so shocked, they shut up and stop demanding for a few minutes, which is all I really need. Your eagle buddy knows he's got a yummy, crunchy buffet at your place, which stinks.

  3. Have you contacted your parks department - or office of DEC? There must be something you/they can do to dissuade SOS from parking at your feed lot. National Treasure or not, he/she is negatively affecting your homestead. That is truly frustrating, but I'm glad to see you inherited your mom's sense of humor. Hang on with both hands. I'll have to remember the Jif/Apple thing. It sounds comforting...

  4. Hope today has a brighter outlook and you can enjoy... Drive safe....

  5. Can you put some chicken wire over the chicken run or are they free range? If they were totally enclosed in wire the Eagle wouldn't be able to get to them.
    I really hope your eagle has had his fill and moves on now. You've had enough carnage.

  6. Thanks for all your supporting comments, everyone! It does me good to know that people are out there rooting for Chicken Mama . . . or Only Goose & Duck Mama . . . or . . . .

    You've all mentioned such good things that I'm going to address it in a new blog post.

    I'll go write it now.


If you are familiar with me and where I live, please respect my right to retain some anonymity by not referring to me by anything other than Chicken Mama nor mentioning city/town/villages by place names. Thanks!