Tag Archives: rooster

Mrs. Houdini and Romeo

Yesterday while working in the meaties pen, I watched Mrs. Houdini try to make her escape.  She failed as Mountaingdad was coming over to see what I was doing and startled her back into the pen, but she was caught in the act.  The gate is a common garden gate that has a wire fence inset in the galvanized pipe frame.  The mesh is tighter at the bottom and larger openings toward the top and the mesh ends about a foot from the top.

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She flew her heavy body up high enough to land on the bar below the top bar and then hopped through to freedom.  The solution was easy to deal with, requiring a piece of the plastic chicken wire and some cable ties.

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She now has to be able to fly about a foot higher and is too heavy bodied to be able to do that.

Earlier in the week, I contacted the farmer from whom I had purchased my dozen hens over the past two years and asked her if she had a young rooster or cockrell or would save me one in the spring so that next time one of the hens gets broody, I can let her sit and raise a brood for next year’s meaties.  The Buff’s grow slower than the hybrid meat birds, but they are dual purpose birds with flavorful meat, so we are going to try to just use them in the future.

Tonight we picked him up.

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Meet Romeo.  He has arrived home just a few minutes a go and will spend the night in the dog crate with food and water and be introduced in a pen tomorrow.  Ms. Farmer says he has a docile personality, he was very calm when we picked him up.  She did say his tail feathers were a bit shabby as he has been picked on a bit in her barnyard.  He was intended as a cull, but had too good a personality for her to do it and she is glad he has a new home where he can reign as king of the coop with a dozen ladies in waiting.

We continue to get 8 to 11 eggs daily from the dozen hens.

Lovin’ life on our rainy mountain farm.

Growin’ Up

The chicks are fully integrated into the coop.  The barrier has been removed, the food and water are outside, the chicks leave the coop during the day and return to perch at night.  The first day they all went outdoors, 6 of them perched in the smaller part of the then divided coop with the big girls and only 4 isolated themselves.  Now they mix it up on the perches, so fun to see with big and littles all scrunched together.

I was still having some concerns about the king and queen of the coop as the Olive Egger was picking on the chicks and Cogburn without most of his harem was beating up on the two Buff Orpingtons hens.  Tonight after coop up time, Jim and I went out and shook up the pecking order a bit.  We moved the 3 red sex link laying hens back into the coop and removed the king and queen to the cull pen and chicken tractor.  Cogburn will have 4 hens and the coop has 5 hens and the 10  nine week old pullets.  Once the pullets are laying and son comes to run freezer camp, Cogburn will likely be returned to the coop and the red sex links may be removed.  The Olive Egger only gives us about 3 to 4 eggs a week and though it is fun to find the green eggs, she may go to camp.  Maybe by removing her and the roo for a while to allow the Buff Orpington hens some rest and the chicks some time to grow some more, they may both be returned to the coop.  That will have stirred up the pecking order and may drop her down a peg or two.

It is still exciting to check the nesting boxes in the evening and bring in 7 to 9 varied eggs.  The sale of the extras to my knitting group generally funds my dinner at coffee shop where we gather.

Life is an adventure on our mountain farm.