On the Wing
I was out working in the yard the other day. The chickens were out free-ranging. Chickens may not always behave in a rational way; however they do have an innate instinct about some things. I say irrational because I have never chased them or harmed them. Sometimes when they see me they run to me yet other times they run from me.
As I work outside I often see the chickens all run from one area where they were scratching to another area to scratch or take a dirt bath. One of them may walk away, but then the others see the walker striking out in a new direction the others have to run to catch up. Some run and some even fly.
While I was out working the other day all the chickens were out in one of the pastures. They were pretty much all together, and suddenly they exploded into a running flying mass. They weren’t following a leader; they were all leaders. They didn’t fly to another scratching area; they all hauled ass into the coop. In a moment I realized why when I heard the trickling cooing sounds that raptors make. A moment later two bald eagles flew high over head.
The chickens seemed to instinctively know when the eagles were gone. They came out of the coop nearly as vigorously as they entered and they went about their day as though nothing ever happened.