I think part of my love for chooks is a feeling of affinity with them. Have you ever done one of those ice-breaker games where you are supposed to draw a picture of an animal that you feel is like you, and then hold it up and explain to the group how you are like that animal? Every time I do that game, I draw a chicken. I think it is that they are industrious - always busy. I like to be busy, especially with my hands. And I like how they are sociable and chat away happily and quietly to each other while they work...but that they are always busy working, getting things done. And I love that they give us eggs. They have multiple uses really - gardeners, destroyers of bugs, egg producers, makers of compost, eaters of leftovers, plus of course the quiet presence of a living thing that they bring to the garden.
My husband does not share my enthusiasm. He seems to find their clucking annoying, rather than soothing. We only got chooks after our attempt at purchasing some land (acreage/lifestyle block) fell through and he knew how disappointed I was to have to give up the dream of having chooks and a big garden. Our first 4 chooks were bantam/Arucana mix and quite stroppy. They were given to me as chick and grew up to lay beautiful little blue eggs on a regular basis. We had 5 originally, but early on could tell that one was a rooster. I was careful not to get attached as I knew he would die young, but Boyo insisted on naming him Frank. So from now on all roosters in our family will be called Frank...or at least those destined for the dinner table. Frank did meet an early death after he started crowing (no crowing allowed in town folks!); a friend came and flicked his neck for me - a very quick way for him to go. We even had him for dinner. Being a young bantam rooster there wasn't much to taste but what we did have was very tender and delicious.
The first 4 chickens when they were still babies!
The 4 girls ended up returning to their acreage home as they got into bad habits of standing in their yard and creating a fuss (VERY loudly) all day.
My second attempt at chooks went better. I was given 4 Sussex girls; a throw between the Light Sussex and Buff Sussex (not sure if those are the right names). They were beautiful, docile big girls with a mix of golden feathers. Mayberry (May), Rose, Pollyanthus (Polly) and Primula (Prim) were named on the suggestion of flower names by my mum.
Stories of their antics will be kept for another post (suffice to say for now that their antics were many and varied - perhaps several posts will be needed!).
But here they are:
Polly (dark with yellow legs), Rose (dark with white legs)
Prim (light with yellow legs)
May (light with white legs)
Thanks for coming by. I hope you like the photos! Amy