Monday, January 31, 2011

On whispering to chickens.

At one point I'd lost track of how many were out in the pasture. I had a general idea but had not written down an exact number. When one is watching chicken tv this isn't the time for counting. It is a time for listening, watching and wondering exactly how big is a chicken brain? Go ahead, call me a chicken whisperer. Did I ever tell you about the time I sewed up a chicken's neck with needle and thread? For real. Ask my Mom, she'll tell you.

Some are more friendly than others. Some regard you with a suspicious eye and turn on their toes and point their fluffy feather bottom towards you when you move a muscle. Others hop right onto bended knee and look somewhat sideways at you while making a slow but deliberate "waaaaallllllkkkk" noise at you. It's almost a question, this "waaaaallllkkk" noise. The answer to which I've not found yet, but about a 1/3 of a coffee can full of lay crumble will usually quell it, if only for a little while.

Wing clipping day provided the counting opportunity that I needed. We lured them in to the henhouse with food and then closed their chicken door. I got the scissors, a bin to put the feathers in and Captain Strong Arms was the designated holder.

We officially have; 18 Red Stars, a hybrid super-layer made by breeding a Rhode Island Red with a Delaware hen or the likes. One Rhode Island Red Hen. One New Hampshire Red Hen. One Easter-Egger (Mrs. Featherbottom, one of my original hens), one game hen (Mrs. TopHat), one game-ameracauna hen (Ms. TopHat Jr.), one game-easter-egger-something-or-other (Ms. Henrietta, who came here carried in my sweatshirt, from Jimmy's farm), and one of my original Ameracauna girls (Mrs. GreenEggers) from the Biscoe fleamarket. Add to this my two OEBB-Red Bantams, their husband "Little Guy", the nicest speckled shy rooster ever to grace the henhouse here at Hope Farms, and their two daughters, "black girls." The most recent addition has been "Bert", my blue Cochin Rooster who I am determined to make a pet out of. He's not quite sure of my intentions but patronizes me adequately.

Running Total: 31

As if we were done. Sheesh, do you people know how in love with chickens I am?

There are three new children, in quarantine currently to make sure they are healthy and happy; Three Bantam Golden Seabrights. A Roo and his two ladies. As yet unnamed, but unbelievably gorgeous.

Then, to use the old cliche, last but not least are the six beautiful Blue Orpingtons compliments of some new friends that we willingly and loudly claim - Thank You for breeding these beautiful shy and yet simultaneously proud creatures. I am going to promise to enjoy them every single day. Even when it is muddy out there.

Grand Total: 40 Chickens to Whisper To. *remind me to tell you about the "bawlk bawlk" joke someday....

So, that's it. For today. And, I want you all to know that instead of doing my English homework, I blogged. So now I can cross that off of my to-do list for today.

A parting thought, compliments of a sticky note my mother left in one of the books she sent me:

"Just for today: there is enough love, there is enough time, and there is enough money".



My Groovy Entropy said...

I so love my visits to your world. I really.. ehem.. cock-a-doodle-DO. I'd love to hear more about your going back to school venture. What are you pursuing?

holyhart said...

I hope you think of me when you look at your New Hampshire Red! Wow! 40 chickens. We are currently down to 3. We lost 3 within the first couple weeks at our new house. Hard lesson for my girl....especially when she found the 3rd one that a raccoon had started to make dinner of before we interupted him. Still trying to talk hubby into getting more chicks in the spring. With all the wild life around here, he'll have to construct a much tougher chicken tractor than the temp one he built. I miss them completely free ranging at our old house.

What is this leisure time of which you speak?

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