Friday, July 23, 2010

Crazy morning!

This morning was exceptionally active, and much earlier than I'd have liked! Sorry, no pictures, for obvious reasons. It started off at 5am when I was woke up by the visiting roosters. The roosters are ones that were hatched out of eggs from my flock by a neighbor in town, and of course the roosters had to get out of town when they started crowing! Unfortunately I haven't been able to find homes for them, and you can't have that many roosters in one place without fighting, so they are scheduled to end up in the stewpot pretty soon, as soon as I can get the guy out to butcher them. They've had a good life so far at least, but their ultimate destiny is to be meat. This has been a terrible year for roosters, everyone is overrun with them. This lady got 4 roosters out of 6 eggs, our splash chicks appear to be 7 roos out of 10 chicks. It would be nice if it would have skewed towards hens instead!

So at 5am I got dressed and went out and caught the four of them from the pen I had left them in last night, put them in a dog crate, and put the crate in the chicken shed. Once they were in the dark shed they went back to sleep. Unfortunately when I walked over to the shed I spotted something else out of place - my four little splash chicks had escaped the chicken tractor and were running around the back field.

I spent the next 45 minutes trying to gently coax them back into the tractor, but ultimately ended up getting the net and catching two of them that way. The other two ran off and disappeared into the blackberry thicket. That was disappointing, because I am supposed to take them over Sunday to give to a friend who has their other 6 siblings, and I would like to take her all four. So I let the dogs out to play for a bit then went in and went back to bed.

A couple hours later I got up again and went outside and found the two stray chicks hanging out by the tractor, so I got the net and managed to get one of them, but the other one disappeared into the bushes again. Since I figured she'd be hiding for a couple hours after all that drama, I let the dogs out to play and got back to my morning chores.

A bit later I was in the kitchen preparing a crock pot full of carnitas, all chicken drama forgotten, when I heard squawking and fussing outside. I ran out to find Barclay had the chick pinned, and Navi was bounding around trying to help him. I'm sure he would have eaten the chick, he just hadn't decided where to start! I ran over, telling the dogs how good they were for catching the chicken, and scooped her up and rushed her inside. Dave pushed the dogs out of the bathroom and we set her on the counter and had a look at her. Surprisingly, she seemed none the worse for wear, with just a little blood from a couple broken feathers. I put her back in the tractor and she seemed happy to see the other chicks, and when I checked on them an hour later they were all running around like they hadn't had the adventure of their lives this morning!

After all that, I was happy to grab Barclay and go to work where it is peace and quiet!



Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Chickens lead such simple lives, don't they? lol!

I hear ya on the roosters, too. I still have Sid because noone wants him. I don't blame anyone, though. He's one nasty creaure.

My kids have come up with the idea to just release him into the woods and let the coyotes have a meal of him.....the circle of life...and all that jazz.

I'm considering it. I mean, really. Why am I feeding and cleaning up after a critter that would rather see me with my eyes spurred out?

Mean Roosters. bleh!


StefRobrts said...

It's just about impossible to find a new home for a mean rooster unless it's in a stewpot!