Thursday, October 29, 2015

We'll climb that roost

I think I mentioned the bantam hen that visited us one day in early summer. She must have decided she liked the way our backyard looked because she jumped the fence and she's been here ever since.

Zeus the Rooster tried to have his way with her early on, but she was too fast. One day while Jilda and I were on the back porch sipping tea, we watched him scratch, cluck, and wag his head. Normally that appeals to his regular hens, but the new game wasn't having any of it. She was fleet of foot so we decided to name her Roadie because she was as fast as a roadrunner.

Several days later, we watched as she began to venture closer and finally she decided he was the real thing and she became one of his love chicks.

A month or so ago, we missed Roadie. After a few days, we began to think that she'd moved on. We'd pretty much given up on her when she saw her blast through the yard pecking bugs, worms, and drinking water. A few minutes later she was gone again.

I realized she was setting.  My search began in the direction from which she came. I have an old pressure washer that's seen its better days, but I haven't taken it to the junkyard. When I looked under the old washer, there she was.

A week or so later we saw her in the yard with a baby chick the size of a cotton ball. It didn't look much bigger than a hummingbird. We tried to get pictures, but she was very protective. Jilda managed to get a few, but they were taken at a distance.

Fast forward to today. When I went for my afternoon walk, Roadie and cotton-ball were out by the fence. Cotton-ball, as my grandmother would say, "Is growing like a weed." The baby is now almost as big as his mother...and I fear it's a rooster.

We won't have to do anything right away, but by next summer we'll have to decide how to keep the young male separated from Zeus. Two roosters in a henhouse is problematic.

We'll climb that roost when we get there. 


  1. Is it too late to change his name to Capon?

  2. This is good. I am getting an education in chicken raising. I had a feather-legged bantam rooster once. I cannot remember what happened to him. He was a pet.
    But when we lived in the country mama raised chickens, the new ones came from monkey WArd or Sears, by mailman. I like the boxes with vent holes in them. But I never learned anything but feed and gather eggs. My highest interest was that 1/2 gallon water jug mama would fill and turn up side down and I never could figure why all the water didn't run out.
    So I will hang loose until the situation comes to a head and you have to 'climb that roost'.

  3. Anonymous8:00 PM

    Did you ever wish you were a rooster so you could have a harem?

  4. Sounds like there's going to be a lot of excitement at your place to see who inherits the harem.

  5. Now I'm getting all full of myself, imagining (my) impressing son and DIL with my new-found knowledge of chickens.
    Oh, were my school teachers as entertaining!

  6. You must have some magic living in your yard that attracts the animal kingdom to move in! They must know a safe haven when they see it! Balance in life is important...especially when it comes to hens and roosters...animal or human!

  7. Sounds like chicken dinner! Is that bad of me:) Too bad Roadie gave in to the charms of mr. Rooster.

  8. New babies of any kind are always welcome. Congratulations (belatedly) to Roadie. She seems to be quite protective.

  9. Those with animals always get to see a side to life others don't. Your chick just proves love will find a way.

  10. "Like a banty rooster" is a phrase that used to be said around here to describe someone who was being particularly proud or cocky, so to speak. It made me wonder if the bantams strutted or crowed more than the other breeds.

  11. A cotton ball? Must have been a delight! Keep us up to date.

  12. Oh, a chicken's world is so interesting. It just goes to prove that every chick has her breaking point before she gives in. hehe,
    Maybe she didn't responded to rooster's advances because she had low self esteem, being and outsider and all...haha.


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