Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Peaceable Kingdom

Our friends marvel when we tell them that we have ten roosters and thirty hens. No, we aren't rolling in eggs... it's winter, and the girls aren't laying as much. Some of the older girls are past their laying prime, but no one dies at Calamity Acres unless by natural causes (or mercifully, if the case may be). For the first five years, Rambo was the King of the roosters. If he saw a younger rooster bothering one of his harem, he would barrel across the yard or pasture, and hip-check the other rooster like a hockey player! Then, this year, Rambo sickened and died of old age. But in a cage in the henhouse was his last son, Baby Rambo, who has grown to be a beautiful rooster like his dad. Not full Buff Orpington, but bearing the stamp of his daddy, he is the New King. He has a beautiful crow... a true Cockadoodledo, and throw his head back and lets it out.

Last year's hatch brought One, Two , Three and Four, who are clearly descendents of the handsome Fred, our Japanese rooster, killed in the dog attack last year. Three year olds are Studly and Butch, also Fred descendents. This year we had Curley, who at one year was kept busy delighting the smaller ladies, until killed by a snake in August. He has left several descendents, however, including a very frizzled cochin-silkie cross rooster, and two others. All get along fine, with minimal sparring. Our theory is that the size of the pasture dictates the peace of the kingdom.

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