One cold morning a few weeks ago, Sweet Husband texted from the backyard, "Something got into the chicken coop." Moe had an ironclad alibi--he was inside sleeping with us at the time--and the damage wasn't his style, anyway.
Tori and Gladys were dead, but whatever killed them had only taken a bite or two. Emily was still alive, but something had left a nasty wound on her neck. I have no way of knowing for sure, of course, but from all I've read, "wasteful killing" like this is the hallmark of a raccoon attack.
So we're down to three chickens...and a half.
Despite her injury, Emily was up scratching and roosting, so we decided to wait and see. Her neck looks disgusting, but it's not infected.
More concerning is the fact that we've had to isolate her from the others so that they won't peck her to death. She's such an odd bird anyway that I'm not sure we'll ever get her reintegrated. On the one hand, I'm not willing to permanently maintain her separately. On the other, she seems to survive everything that comes at her in a way that almost makes me too superstitious to try to "off" her. I suppose we'll give her a few more weeks and see.
The Kid and I both cried that the raccoon got Tori. But we were both partially consoled when Sweet Husband reminded us that this means chicks will be coming in the Spring.