Recently I have been thinking about updating you on the happenings in our “chicken world”. My last post alluded to our duties as chicken owners – weekly chores, feeding rituals and the joy and companionship of chickens.
We currently have seven chickens and one rooster. Mainly Plymouth Rocks, either dark or light barred. They are a beautiful American breed, docile, friendly, albeit slow to grow – we have had our latest batch since January and they have only just come into lay during the winter. Plymouth Rocks do well in a cold climate and here, up on the Mount, it can get to below zero. They survive very well.
Since we received our first Plymouth Rock Rooster, Book-Book, we have had a rather traumatic time looking after our beloved roosters.
Poor Book-Book was taken by a fox one Saturday morning right under our very noses, two years ago. He was a magnificent boy who protected his girls and paid the ultimate price.
With much sadness and anxiety, we sought to replace him. This time we rescued another Plymouth Rock who had been locked up for most of his life. He loved it here on the Mount staggering about in Dick Emery style- shaking his leg to one side. He was quite hilarious to watch.
Colin used to pick him up all the time. But he got sick.
We took Pecker to the Vet (his name was the source of some amusement!) and nursed him in the laundry out of the cold. But we lost him last November.
We waited to see if we could exist without a rooster. By January we could no longer do without one. Venturing far and wide, we finally found a breeder and homeward bound we went with a trio – a rooster and two hens. These little chickens took a long time to grow.
We modernised our current chicken house for them.
So here they are, the current clutch, led by the beautiful Long John Silver.
Then it happened. As Colin filled their feed tin this afternoon, Long John Silver lurched and jumped at him! Swung round and attacked again. I could hear him calling out – Colin that is! Our beautiful boy has turned into a nasty teenager! Will he grow out of it?
But we still love him. If you have any advice on how to manage a volatile rooster, please let me know!