Don’t let your chickens free range if you want to keep them

This has got to be on of my biggest beefs with city folk who move into the houses for rent way out here in the country. They move in and visit the local feed store and say "how cute" to the day old chicks that are for sale. They get the idea that they can have fresh eggs when the chickens get older. Now here is what they don't understand: we live in the foothills where we have coyotes, mountain lions, bobcats and other assorted predators. They get the foolish idea that they can let the chickens free range (otherwise known as letting them wander all over the place including all the neighbors properties) because keeping them in a chicken coop is cruel. Then they complain to their neighbors that their chickens are missing. Us country folk just shake our heads in disbelief. The latest nut job of a neighbor let her broody mother hen free range on my property (they have 20 acres of their own) with at least 20 chicks around her. She told me that she thinks one of my barn cats got 2 of her chicks since she can't find them.  Sorry lady but keep your chickens off of my property and penned up so they don't go "missing." Too bad common sense did not go along with the farm they rented. Welcome to the country folks, get educated.


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