I went outside this morning to let the chickens out and to feed them - I made them some hot mash, let them out and they were all in seventh heaven, strutting around the garden, moving from one of the feeders to the others and looking to see which had more food! Then I came into the house to get a bowl to put the rabbit food in, fetched that and went to feed the rabbits, and there was Coco, dead on the gravel drive. She had been eating along with the others, typically scurrying around as she did - she hated to not be in the thick of the action, she was last to bed every night and the first out the of the door in the morning. When I picked her up, she had food in her crop and was obviously still warm, but very dead. It is a mystery to me how she died, in the four or five minutes that my back was turned. I cried.
Although the picture you will find at the link shows her as a small chick, she had grown into a beautiful Gold-laced Orpington. Her plumage was striking and she was a very inquisitive hen. We'll miss her - she used to make such a lot of noise that we nicknamed her "Cheepy" as she was always cheeping for food when she was little.
5 hours ago