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Chickens!

Mischief

Stranger in a strange land
Just now, thinking once again about how pejoratively we use the word "chicken", I decided we need a chicken thread.

IME, chickens are bright, bold, and inquisitive. I'm going to use this thread to post chicken stories and pictures, and I hope you do the same.

To start off, this is Captain Snuggles, on the day I adopted him from a cat rescue:

Snuggles and me.jpg


He had been found in an alley in Chicago. The kind woman who found him took him to a cat rescue, which is where I adopted him.

The Captain had been totally de-beaked, which led the rescuers to conclude that he had most probably been used as bait by a cock fighting ring and had somehow escaped.

The Captain had simply been called "Snuggles" by the people at the rescue, because he was such a cuddly bird. Within a week of getting his harem at my house, though, he became full on rooster, attacking me whenever I came within reach. (We eventually reached an understanding - mostly.) I decided he needed more authority in his name, hence "Captain Snuggles." The Captain died last year, of natural causes, and without an obvious illness. I just found him dead one morning.

He was a good boy, and very protective of his girls. (All the roosters I have known have been willing to lay down their lives for their flocks.)
 

MadamSarcastra

MadamSarcastra, over & out.
Location
Mid-Michigan
My uncle (Dad's brother) had quite a few chickens back in the late 70s/early 80s. I remember them being fascinating beasties... they were also very curious, and sometimes quite aggressive. We visited my uncle about once every couple months (Walled Lake area)... I'd get to ride the horse... then I'd get chased by the chickens. Didn't matter what I did or what I wore, I'd get chased... usually not for very long. I think they knew it was more of a game before I did. :p

Hey, maybe that's where my fear of things suddenly flapping & fluttering towards me came from! :weird: LMAO
 
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KLS52

“SnarkMaster”
I'm sorry to hear about Captain Snuggles but glad he got to spend his last days with you.

I don't have any chicken stories but look forward to reading everyone else's. My grandparents raised chickens when I was growing up. I do remember liking them as I liked all animals, even back then.
 

Mischief

Stranger in a strange land
My earliest remembered chicken experience was from when I was about 3 or 4. We had backyard chickens. One day, my sister, who is 9 years older than I, was peeling potatoes at the kitchen sink. She threw a hot potato out of the window for the chickens, and accidentally hit the rooster square on the posterior. She says he was never the same after that.

One day shortly thereafter, the rooster attacked me while I was in the back yard. I remember being terrified, and running to the front of the house, where my mother and sister were, with the rooster in hot pursuit. They started laughing uproariously (my sister still laughs about it to this day). I peed myself, I was so scared.
 

MadamSarcastra

MadamSarcastra, over & out.
Location
Mid-Michigan
My earliest remembered chicken experience was from when I was about 3 or 4. We had backyard chickens. One day, my sister, who is 9 years older than I, was peeling potatoes at the kitchen sink. She threw a hot potato out of the window for the chickens, and accidentally hit the rooster square on the posterior. She says he was never the same after that.

One day shortly thereafter, the rooster attacked me while I was in the back yard. I remember being terrified, and running to the front of the house, where my mother and sister were, with the rooster in hot pursuit. They started laughing uproariously (my sister still laughs about it to this day). I peed myself, I was so scared.
Well, technically, they ARE dinosaurs.... I think you had every right to be terrified. ;)
 

Mischief

Stranger in a strange land
Well, technically, they ARE dinosaurs.... I think you had every right to be terrified. ;)
And you too!

A few years after that early incident (we had immigrated to the U.S. by then), my father had a broody hen and no rooster, so he got some eggs from his brother to put under her. Three hatched, even though they had already been refrigerated for a few days. The one chick, Heidi, had a stiff legged walk all the days of her life, we assumed from being refrigerated.

I was put in charge of the three chicks, and my father built a little enclosure just for them, until they were old enough to be safely put in with the flock. There was a solar eclipse that year, and I had been warned to not look at the sun lest I be blinded. I remember being extremely worried about the chicks, and spending the afternoon hovering over them to make sure they wouldn't look at the sun.

Eventually Heidi (who was easily identified because of her walk) was taken out of the coop and chicken yard and left free range. She moved in with Lady, the horse, sleeping in her manger and foraging under Lady while she grazed.

The strange thing was, whenever Heidi saw me, she would come running at me and peck my legs, which was O.K. except in the summer, when I was bare legged. There were many summers while I was in grade school when I would grab a broom as soon as I venture out, so that I could hold her off.

This is all to say: I respect the power of the chicken!
 

MadamSarcastra

MadamSarcastra, over & out.
Location
Mid-Michigan
And you too!

A few years after that early incident (we had immigrated to the U.S. by then), my father had a broody hen and no rooster, so he got some eggs from his brother to put under her. Three hatched, even though they had already been refrigerated for a few days. The one chick, Heidi, had a stiff legged walk all the days of her life, we assumed from being refrigerated.

I was put in charge of the three chicks, and my father built a little enclosure just for them, until they were old enough to be safely put in with the flock. There was a solar eclipse that year, and I had been warned to not look at the sun lest I be blinded. I remember being extremely worried about the chicks, and spending the afternoon hovering over them to make sure they wouldn't look at the sun.

Eventually Heidi (who was easily identified because of her walk) was taken out of the coop and chicken yard and left free range. She moved in with Lady, the horse, sleeping in her manger and foraging under Lady while she grazed.

The strange thing was, whenever Heidi saw me, she would come running at me and peck my legs, which was O.K. except in the summer, when I was bare legged. There were many summers while I was in grade school when I would grab a broom as soon as I venture out, so that I could hold her off.

This is all to say: I respect the power of the chicken!
What a fantastic story! :)

And I had no idea you were an immigrant! :up: :hug:
 

Mischief

Stranger in a strange land
What a fantastic story! :)

And I had no idea you were an immigrant! :up: :hug:
Thanks! I still remember Heidi with a great deal of fondness. (And perhaps some lingering fear!)

Yes, I was born in Germany. We immigrated when I was five.

For those who have never held or touched a chicken - some of their feathers are incredibly silky, and some are very soft and downy. I'm going to try to take some decent photos of the current chickens soon, and post them. I have progeny of the Captain: Alfonso, The Beastie, Papa, Siegfried, Intrepid and Emu. (They were unplanned and unintended - I wasn't paying enough attention, and a couple of the girls had hidden eggs in the bedding, which they covered carefully when they weren't sitting on them. The first I knew of it was when I heard little peepings one morning when I went to open their door.)
 

MadamSarcastra

MadamSarcastra, over & out.
Location
Mid-Michigan
Thanks! I still remember Heidi with a great deal of fondness. (And perhaps some lingering fear!)

Yes, I was born in Germany. We immigrated when I was five.

For those who have never held or touched a chicken - some of their feathers are incredibly silky, and some are very soft and downy. I'm going to try to take some decent photos of the current chickens soon, and post them. I have progeny of the Captain: Alfonso, The Beastie, Papa, Siegfried, Intrepid and Emu. (They were unplanned and unintended - I wasn't paying enough attention, and a couple of the girls had hidden eggs in the bedding, which they covered carefully when they weren't sitting on them. The first I knew of it was when I heard little peepings one morning when I went to open their door.)
Well, I think The Beastie is automatically my favorite! Simply because I like to call all animals "beasties".... :rolleyes: Give him a shnuzzle for me! :D
 

Mischief

Stranger in a strange land
Will do, although he may not exactly appreciate it! He's the most beautiful of the roosters, BTW, although Alfonso is the most imposing, because he's huge.

I had originally named them after the dire wolves, because they hatched the year I started reading A Song of Fire and Ice. I ended up renaming them after the TV series started killing off the dire wolves; it seemed like a bad omen for the roosters.

I had gotten a black hen from someone down the road after the coyotes got the rest of his flock (no scure chicken house for his chickens to spend their nights). I called her "Beauty" because she reminded me of the line "She walks in beauty like the night." I put Beauty with this particular rooster (formerly Shaggy Dog!) and thought it was an opportune time to re-name him.
 

Mischief

Stranger in a strange land
They have really strong maternal instincts.

Geese and ducks mate for life, and are extremely protective of their mates. Roosters are equally protective of their entire flocks.

A couple of weeks ago, a raccoon came out in the late afternoon and went after Siegfried's girls. Luckily, I heard the racket Siegfried was making and went running. Siegfried lost all his tail feathers, but more serious injuries were averted.
 

MadamSarcastra

MadamSarcastra, over & out.
Location
Mid-Michigan
About a block away from us is a fenced-in house with chickens roaming the yard... I think the people got a few more... once I get my camera fixed, I'll try to snag a pic or two when I drive past the house. ;)
 
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