Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Meet the Boys...

Aloysius: part Rhode Island Red/Black Rock/Cochen
So, I never intended on having roosters. I was afraid to after hearing horror story after horror story of vicious attacks on people and hens, alike. And, since we weren't hatching any chicks, we really didn't need any. Chickens lay just fine with or without a male around. In fact, since we only wanted to see eggs, getting a rooster seemed silly.

Aloysius can CROW!

That changed once I met Aloysius at the Common Ground Fair. A "Barnyard Beauty", he had lovely coloring to go along with his mixed heritage and was smaller than the other roosters. I attempted to pet him and succeeded with keeping all my digits. He was only $5 and we had started talking about raising some chicks this year... so, he came home with us to meet his new flock of ladies. To be honest, they did not think much of him at first; mostly choosing to ignore him. I remember with a smile the first morning I awoke to his crowing "good morning" at 5 am. How had I lived without that sound before?

Rufeo cannot crow. It starts fine, but goes horribly amiss.  
Then, came the morning, that there were two distinct crowing calls heard; one loud and proud, one feeble, but a crow nonetheless. We had started to suspect one of our female Americauna's was, in fact, a male. But, since neither Sean nor I can tell them apart until they begin to crow around 5 months, it remained only a suspicion, until we caught him actually crowing. (Experts can correctly sex them as chicks. Not I. They all look the same to me.) Within a few more months, two others of our supposed flock of all hens, began crowing. That brought the total rooster count to four. Where it has stayed, thankfully.

Sebastian is a beautiful Americauna boy. He dances!
Our lads are pretty, precocious, and pleasant. They  do not bite nor attempt to gouge with their talons, which I appreciate. They often dance for their girls to gain their affections. If this doesn't woo a hen, a rooster might resort to a sneak attack from behind. The offended hen left with ruffled feathers and annoyance at the disruption to her scratching for bugs. Sometimes, the hens won't stand for the attempt at romance, choosing instead to kick their would-be Romeo and run him off with clucking admonishments to the delight of the other hens. The general air being one of "it serves you right!"

White Snake was supposed to be an Americauna hen. Ooops!
I am glad we chose to add to our flock and keep the roosters we have been blessed with. They provide much in the way of entertainment. They all have different personalities. Some can really crow, others let out just pathetic attempts. Some dance. Others run away from the hens. They all make me smile and I guess, that is all that really matters in the end. ♥

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