Another storm is approaching, wind, clouds, and rain. But storms haven’t stopped the critter getting into the chicken coop every night. Wiley beast, ignores the live traps but my hound, Blue, has scared it off a couple of times. Still it comes back, night after night. I’ve stayed up late patrolling but am always called off by someone.
Perhaps tonight we at least get a look at whatever is devouring my wife’s chickens. Got her favorite hen last night. She cried so this morning. Now I’m really angry. Tonight’s going to be the night!
Blue and I have hunted for a couple of decades but have never experienced an animal as cunning as this one. Why we’ve got raccoons, fox, ‘possums, got a bobcat once, even ran it to a skunk a couple months ago. I think Blue learned a lesson on that one, so did I. Ol’ Blue’s getting down in the hips lately but still loves to go whenever I do. I’ll take King and Duke with me tonight. They’re learning the ropes from Blue but they’re still afraid of their own shadows.
Finally found my good flashlight. It gets moved around so much I’m beginning to think someone's purposely hiding it on me. Took me almost a hour to find it tonight.
Gun’s ready, time to get the dogs.
“Blue, ya ready ol' boy?”
Bright eyed and ears up, King and Duke know we’re going. Blue rises slow favoring his hips. This may be his last hunt; yet I’ve been saying that for years now. I love that old dog.
“Come on boys, let’s go get ‘em!”
Need to stay downwind from the chicken coop so not to spook the critter.
Woe, the chickens are creating a ruckus. I think we’ll get whatever it is tonight!
Quickly moving out into the field and around the barn to the coop so to keep the wind in front of us. Light’s off so not to scare the predator. Blue’s moving ahead but King and Duke remain so close I’m having problems walking in the dark.
A low growl.
It’s interesting how small animals can generate such sounds. It always amazes me when I see a raccoon or something that little looking at me with teeth bared giving such a fearsome growl. This one sounds more like the soft growl as when an animal’s eating.
There’s a crunch, yup, whatever it is is eating - and one of MY chickens. We’re going to get it this time.
We’re close. Gun ready, light on...oh no, it’s a mountain lion!
Blue’s charging and in the way of my shooting.
“Mr. Hunter, why are you yelling in the hall like this? Stole the nurse’s flashlight again I see. I don’t know how you get into your wheelchair by yourself. Come on, I’ll push you back to your room. Out here in the hallways alone, no telling what trouble you could get into. And still calling for that old dog of yours. Dumb, just plain dumb.”
Looking down beside the wheelchair, “Poor ol’ Blue.”
Glancing over my shoulder, “You hurt Blue’s feelings. You owe him an apology, ya hear.”
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