Thursday, April 8, 2010

Boys Being Boys?

Some of you might recall my "Poultry Politics" post of a few weeks ago. Well, the situation appears to have changed. Young Roos, Apollo and Dionysus, once best buds and partners in crime, seem to have decided sometime Saturday that as they couldn't beat up dominant rooster, Jaguar, they'd settle for each other.
What followed was an epic day and a half long battle. We separated them, they moseyed back to clash again, the control-freak dog (Luka) barked and hounded them, there was a freakin' BULLDOZER moving earth a few feet away, and it mattered not at all. These young roosters puffed themselves up, pecked each others heads, puffed themselves up, pecked each others' heads, etc. etc.
On and on and ON.

It appeared mid Sunday that Dionysus had won the battle. Guess what he wins? A trip to another farm. This place ain't big enough for the two of them.

Meanwhile, it appears that Jaguar, feeling the pressure, has accepted lowly Soccerball into his flock as insurance against the two ruffians down in the barn. Here they, a watchful eye on their hens:

Now, here's the thing: You might say, fine, well roosters, what did you expect? Why title this post BOYS being boys? This is not a fair characterization of the male gender. But wait--

Here you see Charlie, our dominant ram, watching the feathers fly

and fly

and fly

And fly.

He looks for all the world as if he can't be bothered with such testosterone-induced nonsense. Right?

Well, later that same day, we reintroduced Charlie's son, Dodge
back into the ram flock after his winter breeding sojourn, and guess what? The two began to pummel each other!
The scene was fairly similar to the poultry, only the mammals butted heads, chased each other about, butted heads, chased each other about, etc etc. On and on it went on all afternoon, until Dodge (50 pounds lighter but audacious as the day is long) decided to fold. (Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of this as I was waving buckets of grain and hollering for them to quit before someone gets killed.)

What were the hens and ewes doing, while all this testosterone flew? Why, what they always do: Eating, resting, scratching about, caring for chicks, gestating lambs, the usual. Sure they have their squabbles but nothing (ever!) that approaches the heat and fire and raw mean of those goshdurn boys.

And so...

For WHATEVER reason, boys will be boys, at least here on Maggie's Farm.

I'm not willing to generalize, but-- in looking at the state of things in the world, the "civilized" and not so civilized battles in governments and corporations, villages and schools-- I think, perhaps, I could.....


Christy said...

No kidding! I have one rooster too many right now. I've been trying to rehome one of them but can't find any takers. Right now he's living in a cage. Not sure what I'm going to do with him.

Chai Chai said...

Great pictures of the engagement. In the background of one was a wonderful shot of your orchard, I wish we had something as nice a yours.

Terri said...

Your rooster photos are great! Yes, boys will be boys, no matter what the species!

Amy LV said...

Oh, man! Our families need to get together! I am smiling so hard over here that my face hurts. Your photos and true picture of life working, raising three, and work makes me feel like I'm looking in a fun mirror. 'Wish we could just get together for tea right now. Thank you! I will be back!

Alyce Morgan said...

Great blog...I got to you by "Next Blog." I'm at

And to your commenter: a rooster who can't behave...that's in a cage...and whom no one wants....Well, what about the stew pot? Or is he too old?! This from a city girl who raises herbs in the DR window and golden retrievers in her living room.

P said...

Terri& Chai Chai-- Thanks so much for your comments on the photos. I will pass them on to Dan. All the good ones come from him :)

Alyce and Christy-- The stew pot is a definite last resort. One of my first, way-back-when posts was about slaughtering Archie, our first (and meanest) rooster. Lucky for Apollo, it just so happens I know someone who needs a new roo.

Amy-- That's exactly how I felt when reading your blog! I haven't (yet) merged my writer self and shepherd self here on Blogger (I am working on a novel) and so admire that you have the courage to put your wonderful poems out there. Tea would be lovely-- if only you were a state closer!

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