they call it pecking order for a reason

This is rapidly turning into a chicken blog.  Believe it or not, there are other things going on at the farm–and elsewhere.

We decided to get a few more chickens so that we’d have more laying next spring.  At least that’s the hope.  So Ron got three more chicks this afternoon: dominique chickens, a breed from the colonial era.  We thought they were going to be 15 weeks old, roughly the same age as the first trio.  Turns out they are just 10 weeks old so they are a lot smaller.

The Big Girls (e.g., Caroline, Daisy, and Ella) are not thrilled with their new feathered “friends.”  They complained rather vehemently when introduced to the Three Ds (we’re trying to avoid naming the new chicks for, well, obvious reasons).  Finally, Ron kicked them out of the coop and sent them into the orchard to get them to focus on something else.  (Apparently, chickens can perseverate, too).  The Little Girls, meanwhile, are in a wire enclosure within the coop, pretty mellow considering all the trash talk the Big Girls are giving them.

According to that Master of All Knowledge, Wikipedia, Dominique chickens are “calm, personable birds,” which pretty much matches up with what we’ve seen in the last, oh, three hours.

In a day or two, we’ll let the six birds mingle and they’ll have to figure things out.  But it’s been pretty interesting watching the Big Girls’ (differential) responses to the new additions.  Daisy is basically indifferent, but she’s the biggest of the Big three.  Caroline and Ella, however, are very grumpy about the newbies.  It’s a bit of a toss-up, but Ella is probably the biggest complainer–yet she’s the runt of the Big three.  Ron’s hypothesis is that Ella is picking on the Little Girls now that someone–finally!–is smaller than she is. 

I suspect we’ll see the pecking order in action in the next few days and they’ll sort it out–one way or another.  Hopefully, not too many feathers will fly.

We haven’t had the chickens for long, obviously the Little Girls, but the Big Girls, too.  But all those chicken metaphors in the English language, like “pecking order,” are taking on new–and also literal–meanings

And, yes: I’ll post photos.  Really.  Eventually.

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2 Responses to they call it pecking order for a reason

  1. Lisa K. says:

    Am waiting and waiting (not so patiently) for they photos! Love the stories, though! They’ll work for the short term 🙂

  2. Rebecca says:

    Yes, I want chicken photos, too. And also veggie bed photos. And freezer stocked with cooked greens photos or canning jars. : )

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