Billy wandering off is not unusual, but he has been gone with no sightings for a few days now, through the calima which is the worrying part. I do feel that I am partly to blame for Billy's disappearance, as I kept stealing his eggs. I felt that for a while we would stop breeding, and that Billy could lay eggs for me to sell, and look after Finn and Jake. However, Billy had other ideas, and the last morning that I saw him, he had this look of determination.
We had been finding all of Billys hiding places and relocating the eggs to the kitchen, but it seems that he is smarter than us, and that he has found a new secret place to lay. I do hope that is the case and that he is ok, as I would rather he returned with ducklings behind him, rather than not return at all.
I have discovered that this is the worst part of free ranging, as you never know where something is at any given time. All you can hope for is that their stomachs lead them home, and that they appreciate the life they have. Would I want to cage all of the animals, no not really, as to me they need a sense of who they are, and although losing them can be tough it is the circle of life.
Anyway I have tried to contain the chickens in the POW camp and that doesn't work so well, and the goats always find a way out, so in all honesty opening the gates saves me time, energy and repair bills. So, lets hope that Bily is ok, that he is being stubborn and refusing to move until he returns smuggly with duckings, or god forbid he is stuck in a pipe again......rushes off to check the pipe!