I have mentioned before that hubby and I decided to try our hand at hobby farming by purchasing five chicks to use for their eggs.
Things are going quite well, although hubby deserves all of the credit. I pretty much just observe them from afar while he keeps them watered and fed and continues to renovate their coop for the coming winter.
For quite a while now – since the birds started looking like adults and not chicks – there has been one bird that has looked just a little different than the others. See that extra little “waddle” under the chin? We weren’t really sure what to make of this but knew that we had time to ponder the anomaly since the birds aren’t mature enough for egg production until at least November.
Since we have time, let me back up a little to when the little chicks were purchased. Hubby found an article in the local ‘buy and sell’ paper. A few weeks later we drove up to this modified trailer that is surrounded by junk that lies on grass that hasn’t seen a mower all year. (Let me clarify the word ‘modified’ … I don’t mean ‘modified for the better’. I mean that the trailer had a two-room wooden porch built on the front of it many years ago that is now half fallen down, has holes in the floor, and is full of greasy, smelly junk.Oh, and chicks. Lots and LOTS of chicks.)
I knocked on the door and this old guy comes out, bent over and limping and with eyebrows arched to the ceiling in suspicion. I mean, he’s keeping a really close eye on me. Once he realized why I was there, he entered the back room of the porch to get the chickens that I wanted. He would pick them out of their cage one by one, turn them over, look at the ball of feathers, and either put them in the box I was taking or grunt and say something like, “I think that one’s a rooster”.
Very scientific indeed.
So here we are, many months later, wondering if that one odd-looking chicken just naturally looks a little different than his siblings or if it is, in fact, a rooster. All wondering came to an end this morning with an IM sent by hubby first thing this morning:
“It is confirmed. I heard some loud cock-a-doodle-doos this morning as I was walking to the garage.”
You might think this is not the end of the world … and obviously it’s not … but it does mean actual chickens where the eggs for breakfast are supposed to be. I imagine our neighbors are not likely to find the novelty in early rooster crowing for long either.
Chances are we will have to get rid of this bird and we’re not quite sure how to do it. Yeah, the actual mechanics of it are pretty straightforward (axe meets rooster) but going from scrambled-egg-lover to chicken slayer is a pretty big leap.
If the course of action involves an axe-wielding hubby, I just hope he doesn’t fight back.