Rooster ups n downs

9

Saturday 23 May, 2015 by Uncle Spike

The ongoing saga of the daytime fox continues. All farms have lost chickens on a daily basis, albeit she does have a rota it seems, but she is cunning and elusive. To date we have lost some seven chickens these past few weeks, decimating our brood somewhat. Such is rural life, and restocking and a change of tactics on our side has ensued. By the way, the ‘lucky’ aptly renamed Miss Foxy recovered… and then it was her turn again, gone 😦

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Our second-in-command, young Duke-Cocka-Locky was the most recent to depart by way of said Mrs Fox; another daytime raid. He was the chap in the right of the photo below, on the day he challenged Pablo for the top spot; which he failed to attain I might add.

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There is little one can do. There are no open fields here, so plenty of long grass, full orchards and massive old hedgerows affords her plenty of cover. There is little warning, so should I purchase an old 12-bore, the chance of me hearing something (which denotes I am too late anyway), then grabbing said weapon and bounding off across the rock-strewn orchard, there would a very minimal chance of doing anything useful, except for seriously damaging three or four trees I suspect, or shooting the dog or other chickens with stray buckshot. Replenish and move on…

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The fine fellow above was Sir Pablo. As a young lad he was rather colourful, hence the resultant naming. He lived a full life and was one of the only ones in our farm history NOT to become fox din-dins. Alas he passed this week, sat on top of a water bucket, tail in the water, feet on the side, head over the side – just perched there at night, and went… still in that position in the morning – good way to go I reckon. He was munching biscuits just that former night too.

So now we had no guys outside, so off I went to the pen, known as ‘Soup Row’ to select a new farm rooster from our stock of those awaiting the freezer. They are all pretty tame, having hand-reared the lot anyway. One was a different colour, and he wandered past me, so in the sack he went. For those who don’t or haven’t kept chooks, don’t panic, it is not cruel. The second they are in a sack, they totally relax. Lights out means rest time to a chicken. It’s kinda like the bonnet placed on a hunting bird of prey.

Once the girls had gone into their hut, I took the bag around and removed the baling string – he simply walked out, relaxed, chilled and rather confused. He had been removed from Soup Row in a sack, only to end up in a new place, nice straw, water on the side, and ladies just ‘there’…

An hour later an almighty ruckus – one of the ladies was kicking (pecking) the crap outta him. I quickly placed feed sacks over the gate to make it as dark as possible (same trick). A minute later it was all quiet on the Western Front.

The next morning I went out to see who had survived. On opening the gate, the ladies walked out as normal… followed by the rooster – all happy and calm; a new family unit overnight, lol. As for the new young rooster, well he is brown, so somehow he is now called Brian, and that’s official 😀

Brian’s first task is to learn to write, for he has been passed the baton to write to Aunty Gill by the end of this week…. but still, better than life on Soup Row.

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9 thoughts on “Rooster ups n downs

  1. They are tricky little beasts. They are adorable when they are not eating your ducks and chickens.

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  2. Great post Spike! Oh dear soup row. Thankfully we don’t have foxes, that would just drive me nuts. I’ve just put a chooks in isolation today .. Not sure what is wrong. Damn! So sorry to hear about your rooster .. What a shame. Nice to know he had a snack before moving on. Lucky Brian! Very cool name too, he will love writing for Gill 😉

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  3. Maybe Miss Foxy is really Mama Foxy?
    Best friend, Judy, from New Jersey having same problem this spring with something offing her young chicks. Raccoon we think.

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