Our neighbor Jason told me that just before daylight there'd been a commotion in the chicken coop. When he came outdoors to investigate, 16 hens, very upset, were peering into our yard. There should have been 17 hens, but one was missing. So Jason was securing the fence again.
We discussed the predator possibilities. A coyote or raccoon? No feathers lying around, indicative of a struggle. A cat? Ditto. (I knew my cat, Larisa, had been asleep on the foot of our bed at the time, so I felt some relief.) A person? "No," Jason said. "The girls are familiar with people coming around, so they wouldn't make a fuss."
I think it was a bird. An owl, maybe.
My husband Art, after he finished barbequeing, dug out a pellet gun and some other kind of weapon - I can't remember what, and really would rather not think about it - and took them over to Jason for his use just in case. I'm not sure whether Jason and Jennie are into that sort of thing, but Art's heart was in the right place.
I'll be calling over there soon to see if they still have 16 chickens.