Sunday, August 21, 2011

Ricardo Rooster

I'd been avoiding getting a rooster for a long time even though I wanted one. Their crowing reminds me of my first visit to Alle Meria in Volos Greece, a small village on a mountain. Roosters there crowed every morning, and there were a lot of them.

The other day I was visiting with the neighbors who live closest to where I have my animals and asked if they would mind if I got a rooster as they would be most affected by his crowing. They said they didn't mind at all since they get up very early anyway. They also said they liked that my geese sound the alarm so they can let their mastiff out to chase away any intruders like coyotes.

So, I thought about it for all of two hours as I did the restaurants' weekly Costco shopping and decided to stop by the feed store for my first rooster. I was really hoping for a big, beautiful, ornate bird to woo my hen ladies like a Phoenix or a Serama, or maybe even a Polish Crested, but alas, there was a markdown on the overload of bantam roosters they had. And that was the only kind they had. And they were ALL crowing over and over. It was cute because they're small.

So I told the guy to catch me the prettiest rooster he could net.

Meet Ricardo Rooster.

He's small. He's colorful. He walks alone in the chickenyard. He needs no one. He knows already that he is king. King of all he oversees. King of twenty assorted hens. King of the massive mesquite tree and the creepy coop.

He looks on as the hens scrabble for food. He's supervises Tsica, Canella, and Vanilla as they do their goatly duties.

He does not need to be petted or held. (We hold him anyway despite his squawks of disapproval).

He checks on the nestboxes to be sure the ladies are doing their job. He especially like Broody Red Hen who makes a hideous henly noise whenever I show up for egg collection.

He is at least half her size, maybe smaller. But size does not matter to him. He left a pen with over fifty other roosters where he was pecked and pushed around to become king of this small ranch. And so he is...

Broody Red Hen

Our itty-bitty King Ricardo

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