Monday, July 29, 2013

Talking Chickens

Pretty picture of a red elderberry
Yacking with somebody I found by accident, raising chickens in Yakima. We were talking about coyotes and peacocks (The picture of the elderberry tree is just for pretties; high summer is the sight of red berries, the sound of the salmon-berry bird, and the taste of thimbleberries). Anyway, this is me, and it should be clear enough how the conversation went:

"Wow! You are the poultry MASTER! You should have a blog. We had guineas, too, when I was a kid. Another weird cry that I miss.
I just keep chickens like on board a ship - a little chicken tractor that gets moved to new grass every day. At least 2 other tractors, locally, nice ones. Mine can't have any wheels because of small predators, so it's pretty ugly/lightweight wire, but it does it the job. 

Four Easter-Eggers sold to me as Amaracaunas (oh, don't get me started on that whole "what's an Araucana?" mixup). The rooster - "Mr. Kate" (go ahead, laugh now) went off to a flock of 15 Amaracauna hens. Talk about a food vacuum. In an open situation, he'd have been magnificent - white as snow, obviously leghorn blood - but like I said, we just have a small egg coop.

Sounds like somebody took away all your big anchor predators. We had a few cougars when we were kids - we have 'em up here. So no, we're not up to our eyeballs in coyotes. Or, to put it more properly - the coyotes aren't up to their eyeballs in humans (trying to be fair, here; this was their home first).
A neighbor up the river lets her big, weird flock run free. Another neighbor said his sister keeps poultry in a wildlife area. First couple of years, lots of kill-off. Then the chickens got smart (or the dumb ones got et). Poultry is from jungles, after all. Those wild gene files are just sitting there. Well, that's not a surprise; poultry were the last animal that domesticated themselves - even after cats"

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