If you saw a little old lady swinging a large stick while chasing a fox Wednesday afternoon in Jefferson, don’t be alarmed. It was my mother, a passionate chicken owner.

Mom heard a commotion outside, got up and looked out the window. That’s when she spotted a fox chasing her rooster, Brewster II.

Faithful readers know mom recently lost another rooster, Brewster I, and several hens to a hawk. Now, to her dismay, a fox has pegged her house for a free chicken dinner. Without taking time to put on a coat or boots, she scrambled to chase the fox away.

“He had the rooster’s tail feathers in his mouth,” Mom said. “I grabbed the BB gun and ran outside, but I couldn’t make it work. I didn’t realize I had to cock it. So I threw down the gun and grabbed our big walking stick.”

That’s when Mom, who’s 100 pounds soaking wet, ran after the fox. Round and round the garage they went, mother wielding a big stick and hollering, “Get out of here! Leave my chickens alone!”

But the fox stayed just out of her reach.

The rooster fled on foot to the back porch. That’s when that wily fox set his sights on a nearby hen, named Henny Penny.

Luckily, Henny Penny took flight and hid from Foxy Loxy in the rafters of the garage. 

With the chickens out of reach and a crazy woman after him, the fox retreated down the nearby gully.

“I would have clobbered that fox, if I could,” Mom said. “I was upset. I didn’t know I had all that energy, but I did.”

This persistent predation and the associated trauma is taking its toll on the chickens, as well as my mother.

It’s not like her to run around like a crazy woman — at least not since Sis and I left home. Haha!

As of Friday, Brewster II is hiding in the chicken coop, Henny Penny won’t come down from the rafters in the garage, and Mom is learning how to shoot the BB gun. 

More chicken tales to follow.

This story reminds staff writer Shelley Terry of one of her grandmother's favorite sayings: "Whistling girls and crowing hens always come to some bad end." Write Shelley at sterry@starbeacon.com.

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