Fox – 1 Chooks – 0

It was inevitable really, we knew it would happen one day and it could have been so much worse with the amount of birds we have and the freedom they get but even so, waking up to find a shaggy pile of feathers instead of a little brown hen is harsh.

It was Hetty, the little hen that had been foster mum to the chicks. Lucky for them they were tucked up in bed, unlucky for her she’d got out at some point and I found her feathers in an outdoors nest box.

So now we are off to the quarry and try to find the foxes den so that the men folk can put in some serious hunting time. This time of year the foxes will have young and in a couple of months time they will be out hunting with their parents so they need to be stopped now before the problem gets even bigger.


I understand this post may upset some as there was a time when I chose not to eat meat and was very anti hunting but the truth of the matter is that this is a farm, we have stock, and it is our job to protect them.

I agree that foxes also have a right to live & feed and if they took only what they needed to fill their belly then I would see that as sort of tax that a poultry keeper has to pay. Sadly though, if you put a fox in a field with 100 chickens it would simply kill them all whilst only eating 1. As a predator a fox is ruthless, killing for fun, not just for food.

I know there are people that also kill animals for fun but that is something I can’t understand, all our animals are well loved and all aspects of their life and death are treated with respect. It took me a long time to change my view on this subject, and the taking of a foxes life is not done lightly.


About HedgeComber

A Field-to-Fork food blogger based on a small farm in Cornwall, UK.
This entry was posted in Chickens, Ducks, Smallholding. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Fox – 1 Chooks – 0

  1. angel says:

    Aw Poor Hetty.:-( she will be missed.I supose you have to do whats right for the livestock Hedgie, i would hate to see all your chooks being killed off by this fox.If we all lived in your environment we would understand why it has to be this way.I know all your animals are well cared for, if anyone has a problem with what has to be done, its their problem not yours. when i was a child i remember a dog getting shot for worrying sheep, no-one batted an eye to this, its the ways of the country. Now we live in citys we are to mamby pamby about animal welfare but leave a dog in a car without water to die a horrible death, so lets not judge others for their way of life.If i was in your situation i would have to do the same thing.

  2. angel says:

    Oh and by the way……… Yes you have to wait for my BUTTON…. co’s it has to be the RIGHT one, now dosnt it. :-)

  3. Lajoni says:

    You have to do what is right for you and yours like we all do. Fox hunting as with hounds etc I disagree with as to me that is just a sport.What you have to do is for the survival of your livestock and I hope your successful as I said somewhere previously if one came onto my land and killed my dog I’d shoot the B myself!!

  4. Rose&Bird says:

    It’s a horrible decision to have to make, but if you have to, you have to. I am a deeply committed veggie and abhor blood sports in any form, but despatching pest animals is a necessary evil in the countryside. The important thing is that it’s done properly and quickly – i.e shooting by an experienced marksperson. I desperately want chooks, but we have a pair of foxes that regurlarly visit our garden, so I don’t think it would be a good idea. My Guinea Pigs also don’t live outside for the same reason. Personally, I prefer to have a wild creature like the fox visit our garden than other people’s horrible cats! (apologies to cat owners)

  5. Horrible news! Poor Hetty! As for dealing with the fox(es), well, that’s just another sad part of life – it’s all got to be kept in the balance.Factory farming is offensive, animal cruelty is offensive – killing some foxes who will kill your chickens (ie. the ones you’re keeping to avoid the factory farms!) is not offensive… oooh, did that make sense? LOL

  6. Elaine says:

    It is very sad, but sad for the fox too. At least you will be doing it humanely.I might pop something on SCC about the discussion on this subject I heard on Springwatch. Very much a “best of both worlds” type solution.Love and blessingsxxxxxxxxxxxx

  7. claire says:

    How horrible to find a pile of feathers :( I think I must be less townie than I think I am as I totally agree that the foxes need stopping in their tracks, when we lived further out of town one night a fox (or foxes?) killed about 12 pet rabbits in neighbouring gardens. Like you say its not for food or survival….

  8. Elaine says:

    Hello it's me again.I feel I need to make a tiny stand for the foxes.When foxes kill they often leave their prey where it is, eventually they will return for it and stash it for harder times, what people often see is their unstashed stash, which looks like an indiscriminate killing spree.This info came from someone who lost 13 chooks in one night, so had every right to be angry with the foxes.Of course, sometimes when the fox population gets too high there is too much competition for the food (freely) available, and, sadly, they do need to be culled.Last night, around midnight, we heard such a racket going on outside. It was 2 foxes, probably last years cubs, fighting over a scrap of paper with chocolate inside!!! This being in the middle of our street, which is quite a busy main road!!!Love and blessingsxxxxxxxxx

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