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  • One late winter day I traipsed out to the mailbox, glad to be outside. I looked up the road as I crossed and standing just outside of an abandoned driveway cut was a fox with two kits. She looked at me with interest but it was not until I moved toward her that she turned and led the kits back into the brush.. I was pleased to see them and thought no more of it except hoping I might get a glimpse again. That spring at the same spot when I was on the same errand I spotted a small white rooster and two black hens. Odd . I had never seen that before. Where had they come from? I had known people to drop off kittens but never chickens. The closest house was up the road some. Maybe they belonged there. As I walked toward them they too disappeared into the brush.

    It was only a day or two after that one of the black hens appeared in our dooryard alone. I looked around for the other two and could not see them It was then that I thought of the fox and wondered if the other two had met their maker. The little black hen seemed quite content to graze in our yard and fly up into the pine tree out front at night to sleep.
    So we had a pet chicken. Her name was Bitty or Biddie. She slept in the trees at night and hung around during the days and summer moved along. Our coon cat Scruffy stalked her daily but she flew up whenever he got too close and Scruffy tired quickly of the game. Summer was winding down and We realized we had to make plans for Bitty's winter quarters. Bill took an old tool box of my brother's and built a hen house on stilts. He made her a little perch and got a heated bowl which would keep her water from freezing and keep her toasty enough. He built a little chicken wire yard with a roof over it and she took up residence. The snow came and Biddy stayed warm. As winter wound down she started laying little eggs and we ate omelets. Biddy had made it to spring and we talked about getting her some chicks. Bill started letting her out during the days and she would go back in at night. One day I was going to work and Bill was going to be away so I told to keep her in. I came home in the evening, fed her and went to bed. Next morning I came out to check on her and there she was splayed out on the ground. The fence was bent up and she was just bones. I guess that fox finally got her after all. I wish I had let her sleep in the tree. and that was Biddy's story.
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