I’d like to introduce you to Clara today. Ever since we got our chicken bracelets or markers or whatever those things are called you put around your chicken’s leg we have had names for our chickens. My six-year-old daughter got to name most of them and this one is Clara.
Clara has always stood out from the rest in that her comb on her head is much larger them all the other chickens and flops to one side. She also seems to just see herself as a boss or queen or the chicken who rules the roost in our coop. She is larger and just plain queenly!
Every evening we let our chickens out for an evening stroll and free range time where they can eat what they want and then they head back to the coop on their own as it gets dark- when my husband closes up the coop for the night.
One night Clara decided to sleep separately in the brick chicken hospital (that is another story) my husband had made and he only realized the next morning she had been there all night. I was relieved all was well and she had survived a night alone.
The next evening she decided again to sleep in the chicken hospital which was open and seemed to want the solitude of being on her own- this time my husband knowingly let her stay there for the night. I was against this idea- thinking a cat might find her there – but what was done was done and he left her there for the night.
It was about 2:30 a.m and I was dreaming about my brother being in town and showing him our chickens when I was yanked from my dream with a scream in the night. I immediately said, “That’s Clara! ” My husband jumped out of bed and ran to our window and then downstairs to see if he could do anything. But it seemed all our hopes were lost with a squawk that loud and far from the coop and chicken hospital she must have been carried away by some large cat. (I wondered about this all night because she is a large chicken and it would have to be a truly large cat to carry her)
Just as my husband was heading out the backdoor she squawked desperately again, which much to our relief gave him some clue as to where she was.
When my husband returned to bed he told me he had found her next to the coop door and had put her in with the rest- but that it was too dark to see how badly hurt she was.
After a sleepless night we went outdoors to assess the damage and our yard was literally covered in feathers from one end to the other. Kind of hard to see how many there were in this photo- but you get the idea.
There were even feathers all around the entrance of the coop- sorry this photo is a bit blurry.
But much to our amazement Clara looked fairly fine. A bit bruised around her comb, far fewer tail feathers, but otherwise alive, well and without any signs of blood or serious injury.
We were so thankful that she survived this ordeal and now 2 weeks later looks back to her normal self!
Our best guess is that a cat dragged her from the chicken hospital, across the yard and then somehow she woke up and ran back to the coop door. From there it must have tried grabbing her again, which was the second squawk we heard near the coop when my husband was running out. Which means he got out there just in the nick of time to scare the cat away from its second attempt at catching our Clara.
So there you have it- the story of Clara- our queen of the roost!