To continue the series on male farm critters around here, today’s topic is Jerky Rooster #1, or J.R. 1 for short.
Yes, we do giggle at the reference to “JR” from the tv show “Dallas” many years ago…
When Caroline (finally) successfully raised 6 chicks late this summer–they hatched 1 August–turned out 3 were hens, 3 were roosters. We were pretty sure at least 2, possibly all, of the roosters would have to “go.”
“Go” being a convenient euphemism for being killed and butchered, of course. Remember this every time you eat meat.
And note the passive voice there. Someone (Ron) has to do the killing (again, Ron) and butchering (still Ron).
And yes, I’m a big fat hypocrite because I eat ethically raised meat without doing the killing and butchering.
But back to the roosters and their fate.
The roosters were very pretty and we like having them around. Their crowing is nice. For the most part, the rooster boys were pretty nice–nicer, for instance, than Scruffy at the same age. Perhaps, we thought, we’d keep (a) (the) rooster(s).
Yes and no.
We haven’t been spending a ton of time in the orchard with the chickens because of the onset of winter. However, Ron has been out there more than I have. And he saw some typical rooster behavior.
Starting with J.R. 1. The first jerky rooster started chasing Cleo around, clearly wanting to mate with her. After all, her full name is Cleopatra and she is probably the prettiest hen we have… Can’t really blame J.R. 1 in that sense.
However, he was chasing Cleo around. Repeatedly. Cleo was clearly not happy about the whole thing. So after several days of this silliness, Ron decided it was going to be J.R. 1’s time to go. He thought that he would pull J.R. 1 out of the coop first thing the next morning and dispatch him as quickly and humanely as possible.
Well, after J.R. 1 continued bothering Cleo, Ron decided enough was enough. That was J.R. 1’s last afternoon–no waiting until the following morning.
Because J.R. 1 was only about 4 months old at the time, we decided to have roast chicken. Or rather, roast rooster.
I’ve been especially squeamish about eating roast chicken when it’s so obvious what is what–and who was what–or what was who??? However, when jerky roosters terrorize poor hens, guilt goes out the window rather quickly.
And, I must say, J.R. 1 was absolutely delicious.
You can probably guess the fate of J.R. 2 from his name. Another day.