The broody hen was killed in a night raid.
This morning when I went to check on the broody hen, she wasn't there. There was one black feather and some broken eggs. I hoped she had just been frightened by something and was holed up somewhere else. This evening John thought to look in the chicken coop where none of the chickens have been for weeks. She was there but dead. She got out of the closet in the barn without being captured and thought she would take cover in the coop but something followed her in and attacked her.
It is interesting that you can determine what the predator was by the remains. I had forgotten what each predator does but looked it up again tonight. It sounds like it was something in the weasel family. Weasels are pretty skinny and can get through anything bigger than 1"so can easily go through the fence.
According to what I read, the weasel is suppose to be the farmer's friend. They eat mice and other rodents and usually eat whatever is most plentiful. I didn't know the skunk was in the weasel family so actually it could have been a skunk. The children's' message at church this morning was about skunks. Apparently there are an average of two skunks per acre.
Whatever the culprit, if they come back tonight they won't find any chickens or eggs. I cleaned out the closet. The rest of the chickens roost fairly high so may be O.K. If it was a weasel the chickens are probably safer in the barn than the coop. If it was a skunk they should be safe roosting in the barn as well. It was just not a good idea to nest on the floor of the closet.
In three years, that was the first chicken attack at night. The others went missing during the day but not when we were around.
Black #1 or was it Black # 2, was a very sweet hen. I shall miss her. She was the one that was going to be a good mother one day and probably was in the past.