It isn't completely clear how they got out. The bottom latch on the crate was a bit worn, so it is possible that they simply pushed it open and slipped out the door below the top latch. Additionally, the bottom of the crate has larger openings than the sides. With minimal digging, they could have lifted the crate and escaped through the bottom. The act of corralling them destroyed any evidence of how they might have escaped, however, so we may never know for sure.
The neighbor was able to get one of the piglets into the chicken run, and another was cornered. Before long, however, the one in the chicken run found a way out. We called our pig partner for assistance, and both pigs were in the other crate before we got home for the evening. This crate was reinforced with rat wire and has a fully functioning latch, so the piggies were secure. A quick, flashlight-guided survey of the realm showed no sign of damage. Aside from various items that had been moved around to try to contain the animals, everything looked completely normal, so we went to bed.
|The Little Marauders... Contained Now|
Sleepy Mr. Farmer awoke on Sunday morning to find that the chickens were out of the run! Apparently that piglet had left an opening in the run where it escaped. The chickens had been marauding in my garden for a few hours. The whole family was awakened to try to contain the little beasts. I made coffee. Mr. Farmer and Young Master Farmer rounded up chickens. Little Miss Farmer, in spite of her efforts to lure the chickens with worms, was not having success, so she worked on closing up the breech in the chicken fence. In just a few minutes the hens were secure, but the damage had been done.
The chicken's weeding of the garden looked kind of nice at first, then we saw the damage. The mint that I had so painstakingly rescued was completely gone. I think the root has survived, but not a single leaf remains. All the baby butterfly-bush sprouts that I had transplanted from all over the yard and gardens were scattered to the winds. Several leaves were torn from the rhubarb. The brand new thyme was above ground, as was one cucumber plant. All of the full-grown dill was laying down on the ground.
Early morning gardening does get the blood flowing, I guess. So if there is a silver lining in all of this, that must be it. How often can I say that before 8 am on a Sunday morning I had located and replanted almost a dozen butterfly-bush sprouts, re-planted several herbs, and trimmed and re-mulched a rhubarb? Not many, that's for sure. I certainly earned my morning tea, and my title as Mrs. Farmer.