This black and white Brahma with feathered feet and legs was one of my favorites and I named her Henrietta. She was a giant of a hen, with a gentle disposition and the funniest running gait of the flock. According to my chicken reference book, the Brahma hails from the Brahmaputra region of India, although that has been disputed. Some argue that the Brahma was developed in the U.S. by crossing Cochin and the Malay breeds. Matters not to me.
When I went last evening to feed and gather eggs, I found her in a nesting box, dead. No trace of wounds or injury, although sharp teeth can penetrate leaving little observable damage behind in all the feathers. We looked for tracks in the snow and Michael believes he saw a trail most likely of a fox from the direction of the creek. It had to have approached in the late afternoon and the snow and cold kept most of the chickens inside the coop. Poor Henrietta, she just happened to have wandered out for a bit of fresh air and after being attacked, made it back inside and hopped up into a nesting box where she died.
All eight of these young chickens were chicks purchased in the spring of 2021. After spending their first few months in the brooder house together they continue to hang out apart from the older hens, which I find quite amusing. Henrietta in the foreground, will be missed by the gang. Mother Goose Ethel wants to supervise the group and adds her two cents worth. After encountering a contest between her and Rocky, the sneaky rooster in the background (an unplanned for male interloper) I am beginning to think he had something to do with Henrietta’s demise. Ethel won the challenge with him, for now, but if he persists in being cruel to the hens or to me, heaven forbid, he will face severe consequences.
In the spring, I will expand my order to three or four of the Brahmas to add to the flock.