We lost a hen today. First loss in nearly two years of having chickens. A raccoon raided the coop and smashed the eggs the hens had been sitting on, then cornered the buff sussex. Alex heard the commotion and drove off the raccoon. He found the other hens gathered up at a distance and guarded by the rooster. Good rooster!
We’re sad – these girls are farm animals, sure, but they’re living and feeling beings and we are attached to them. Interestingly, they feel the loss too. I went out just now and caught the rooster standing and looking at the pile of feathers where the sussex fell. Alex says he’s seen the whole flock standing there looking at it too. We’re not going to anthropomorphize and say what they are thinking and feeling, but they are clearly affected.