Tuesday, May 3, 2011
Winter's big rooster round-up is over and done with. The daffodils are out, the mint is starting to sprout in the garden (and everywhere else it can get to) and the hens are scratching fall's last shriveled leaves to bits.
Also, the three remaining roosters are figuring out the pecking order.
Chickens really do have them. There's always a fat, glossy hen with an evil glint in her eye, not so different from those Housewives of Orange County. (Okay, I confess, I've never SEEN one of those housewives shows so this last part pure guesswork)
Anyway, there's also the timid bottom rung girls
who are lean and rangy and dart more often then they waddle.
Often there are squabbles between them, but these last a few seconds. High ranking hen says "Move it pipsqueak!" and low ranking hen, flutters off clucking apologies, that sort of thing.
But with roosters, this stuff is more like "Lock-Up" or something (Again, haven't actually seen this show, but I don't exactly live in a cave either.)
Our main man rooster, Jaguar is 3 or 4 years old now (He's the khaki fellow on the far left)
Jaguar has been king of this here castle quite a while, and he has all the swagger of John Wayne. He doesn't start fights, but he can end them.
Too bad for Jaguar, our second ranking rooster is two this year, a mature and weighty bird with a magnificent dark green tail.
And plenty swagger of his own.
He used to be "Dionysus" until he beat up his brother Apollo
Since then, he's lived with his own small harem away from Jaguar in the lower barn. We now call this dude "Vlad" or "The Black-Bottomed Rooster" after the vulture in Horton Hears a Who
Vlad had an edge, and he has been angling to displace Jaguar for a while now. Today they had a run in in the no-bird's land between the coop and the barn. But the dogs made such a fuss, they went their separate ways without resolving anything.
It's a waiting game now.
Which brings us to the last of the Maggie's Farm Roos: Blackbeard
This guy is young. He still has that gangly, goofball quality (just look at that face!)
The hens just don't take him seriously, but he hangs around the outskirts of Jaguar's flock, trying to snatch them away (Roosters are not above rape.) Of course, when he starts after one, Jaguar comes barreling to the rescue. So mostly Blackbeard runs, and watches and waits. I don't think he's eating much.
So that's our current triumvirate. But I'll keep you posted.
Posted by Perri at 5:56 PM