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December 10, 2012

Girl finds that chickens can make great companions

(Continued)

FOX STRIKES 

The first batch of chickens, five New Hampshire reds, were acquired from a neighbor who was moving out of the area. The chickens met an unexpected fate in November last year when a fox swiped them from underneath the fence.

“Addie had gotten back from school; it was about 4:30 p.m.,” Trish said. “It was just turning dark, and she came back crying and said the chickens weren’t there and all there were were feathers.

“The next morning, we saw the hole where they (the chickens) were dug out and a trail of feathers. They are her pets. She was very upset.”

Addie did some research, and she said she knew it was a fox because all predators have different techniques for attacking their prey. She found that it was typical for a fox to drag their food away instead of eating it on the spot. She knew exactly what had happened when she saw the feathers leading to the woods.

COLORFUL EGGS

Addie’s mom said it was only a couple of months before she asked if she could start over with a new batch — but this time she wanted chicks.

This past January, a local farmer and friend of the family was ordering a batch of Araucanas, or “Easter-egg chicks” because of the blue and green eggs they lay, and Trish added to the order for Addie.

Using her own savings, Addie said, she went to the bank and asked for a bunch of $2 bills, “just to make it special,” and ordered her seven chicks: Flappers, Tupelo Honey, Fluff-Fluff, Tica, Fenway, Hermione and Peep.

While waiting for the chicks to arrive, Trish and Addie attended a Cornell Cooperative Extension farming and agricultural forum at Heaven Hill, near Lake Placid, to get more education and prepare for the new babies.

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