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I've still got two chickens who are about 10 yrs old. They're perky and lively enough but but I've noticed a lot more cats in the garden. They used to really shout at cats and squirrels but they're not taking much notice of them now. I wondered if the chickens are just getting too old to be bothered and if anyone had noticed that sort of behaviour in their old chickens. Sometimes foxes 🦊 sit in the garden and everything is quiet. They only shout if a fox goes up to the run. 🐔  🐔 

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I’d be soaking that fox with the hose.  Don’t hate them just like to keep my garden inhospitable to them.  

Maybe your old ladies have decided that the fox isn’t worth the effort but it is worrying as they should be scared.

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Chickens do realise they are behind fencing and are 'safe', so don't get alarmed by anything on the ground. Here ours only alarm when there are airborne predators, even the youngsters.

Old chickens do slow down a lot anyway and their eyesight can start to fail, so perhaps they can't see the fox at a distance? We had a problem last month with two oldies that couldn't see their black perch anymore, crashed into it, fell off and got spooked so won't go into the coop now. We have to put them in every night and the perch has been wrapped in white tape, which they can see. No idea how long it will take for them to go back in on their own: perhaps never?

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15 minutes ago, Beantree said:

Chickens do realise they are behind fencing and are 'safe', so don't get alarmed by anything on the ground. Here ours only alarm when there are airborne predators, even the youngsters.

Old chickens do slow down a lot anyway and their eyesight can start to fail, so perhaps they can't see the fox at a distance? We had a problem last month with two oldies that couldn't see their black perch anymore, crashed into it, fell off and got spooked so won't go into the coop now. We have to put them in every night and the perch has been wrapped in white tape, which they can see. No idea how long it will take for them to go back in on their own: perhaps never?

We had a blind/very short sighted chicken.  She was the only one that survived a fox attack when hubby didn’t close the door on the run properly. 

She’d do funny things like walking into the wire of the run repeatedly as she tried to find the entrance.  We put one of those cheap solid step stools in the run for her to perch on as she couldn’t get into the bar perches but wanted to be off the ground. 

The other chickens used to bok softly all the time and she’d follow them about from the sound.  Sometimes when she got stuck outside the run one of the others used to go out and get her. 

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That is so sweet. Who says animals don't care. Humans should take a note. 

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I’ve said goodbye to two of my original three Poland’s in the last year.  Both nearly 11.  Yes, they slowed down preferring to eat and sleep in the sun during the day.  One was blind for at least a year, but followed everyone around.  The beginning of the end was when they struggled to get up the cube ladder.   Both had strokes in the end and, although I know theoretically how to cull, I took them to the vet to be put to sleep.   I have two more oldies, about 9 and 8 but they too just Potter about. 

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You've done so well, those really are good ages 😀  I got rid of my flock when we moved to Portugal, most of them were around 6; a few were younger.  I think because they are lightweight birds they survive pretty well if you look after them properly, they never seem to get respiratory illnesses for example, despite being a Mediterranean breed, or anything digestive.  Will you get any more do you think, I don't read so much about Polands now and I wouldn't be sure where to source them.

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Skye was 10 when she passed and Squirt would have been 10 in March, but we had to dispatch her eventually.  She was going blind and could only see grapes if they were red and skin side up.  Good that some went on even longer.

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