Wednesday, September 01, 2010
A Flock Again
Dr. Gooch called me after he got off his shift in the ER.
"Wanna grab the kids and meet me out here. I want to buy these chickens for sale."
Any excuse to get out of the house into the great wide open is a good enough excuse for me. So we drove out into the country and met Mike and his son Ben. Ben had started up his own little flock of hens and subsequent business. He was selling a few to make room for some rare breeds in his coop. So, we chose three and put them in a cardboard box in the back of our swagger wagon. We only heard one squawk on the drive home.
So, it's been a few days now and the girls are growing accustom to each other, but Gloria (our original lone hen) is the obvious Alpha female. She spent the first day with her new sisters nipping at their feathers and fluffing her own in their faces. They got the message, but are teaching her their calm hen-like ways. The newcomers like to roost (as most normal chickens do) and lay in the dust in the midday sun. They cluck around the yard (inside the fence) eating bugs and grass. Gloria is not used to this domicile life. She's a renegade learning to mend her ways to suit this more docile (and hen-appropriate) life.
It was fine retrieving one bird every evening from the neighbor's back porch railing, but, I told Dr. Gooch, I'm not about to go running after four fat chicks after dinner every day. The four skinny ones I run after are quite enough, thank you. He heard my whining loud and clear and brought home electric wire from Lowe's and strung it the length of our fence. So far, so good. A few attempts at escape, but they didn't get far. Eggs from four chickens is so much better than eggs from just one. And I like to think she's happier now with a bit of company. We're all happier with a bit of company.
Though, Seth worried the shock would hurt the chickens. I told him, because I am his wise mother, "sometimes it hurts to learn your lesson." Or, maybe I'm just sick of chasing chickens. Plus, *fried* chicken is pretty good. It's a win-win, really.