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16 December 2011

Something to crow about

Yesterday while I was drinking my morning coffee, I could hear a faint sound which I couldn't quite decipher coming from the direction of my chicken coops. I couldn't decide, sitting in my study, if it was a hen announcing the arrival of an egg, or some other strange commotion. I decided to get up and go to the back patio to listen more closely.

I didn't actually make it out to the patio, but froze, listening just inside the back door with a big, sloppy stupid grin on my face. Yes one of our young cockerels has come of age, and was letting the world...well, the backyard at least know about it with a soft, rusty sounding "Err-uh-errrrrrr!"

I don't know which one of the boys it was. When I went up to the grower pen to ask who was crowing, I was met with sealed beaks and innocent looks while the young pullet softly suggested a solution to the 'problem.' 

"Chop-chop!" she clucked under her breath. "Chop-chop-chop!" She is always suggesting that her brothers should get the chop! She's such a meanie.

All of the other hens, both my own, and the guest hens we are chook-sitting were in a state of high excitement, calling out to let the 'man' know where they are.

So, our 'babies' are all grown up. 12 weeks old, today and I am already starting to plan for next season's hatch. I love the rhythm that these lovely birds have brought to my life. Yes, they're hard work, but they repay my efforts in eggs, and more than repay it with the enrichment they bring me.



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