Diary

Meet Henry!RSS feed

Posted: Saturday 14 January, 2006

by Rosemary at 9:47pm in Poultry 5 comments Add your own

Well, we got our new hens today - or to be accurate, our six Light Sussex pullets and Henry, our Buff Sussex cockerel. More of the pullets tomorrow - but Henry is the main man, king of the dunghill, cock on the rock etc etc.

Henry, Buff Sussex cockerelMr Ogilvie, from whom we bought our new poultry, had very kindly caught both a RIR and a Buff Sussex cockerel. The RIR was a fine bird - but then we saw Henry! He really is quite magnificent. The photo does not do him justice. He moves awful fast and he's not very keen on folk with cameras (or folk in general, see below).

Having brought him home in the cat basket, we decided to be brave and put him in with our girls, who had been confined to the run for the morning. It WAS our intention to keep them confined all day, to "bond" and for Henry to find his way into the ark. We put him in "upstairs" and waited. And waited. The girls were staring expectently up the ladder then Henry, in a whoosh, made his descent.

The Leghorn was NOT impressed - boy, did she lay into him. So did a couple of the Rhodies! He must be at least twice their size, but that didn't deter them. It wasn't pretty. I can see why cock-fighting was banned. And Henry barely retaliated - I don't know if this is good or bad. Anyway, we decided that he needed to escape so we let them out.

Eventually, the hens seemed happy to let him stay with them. At first, they seemed to be running off and leaving him to wander about on his own (awww). Then came bed-time. All the girls went to bed. Henry decided to make his own arrangements which involved bunking down beside the french doors. This didn't seem awfully sensible to us, so we decided to "herd" Henry into the ark. Not a chance. He's fast and agile; at one point we thought we had lost him into the scrub beside out field. We had a torch, a sheet to throw over him and a corral of chicken wire. None worked.

Eventually we managed to herd him into the garage and trapped him behind Dan's bike. He has a few fewer feathers than he had this afternoon, but at least he's not a) frozen or b) a fox's breakfast. He made the most frightful noise when we caught him and carried him back to the ark. We put him in beside the roosting hens and waited. All quiet - with all the running he did evading us, he must be exhausted.

Tomorrow, cock fight or no, I think Henry and his six wives will be having a quiet day in.

Comments

claire

Sunday 15 January, 2006 at 11:51am

he looks lovely! the hens were obviously letting him know the pecking order!

Sue

Monday 16 January, 2006 at 5:20pm

You have no idea the fond memories reading this brought back! Especially from that time you entrusted me to hen-sit... funny enuf you never did ask me to do it again! ;-)

All the very best to you both.

Dave

Wednesday 18 January, 2006 at 2:09pm

Wow, Henry looks incredible. We're currently re-structuring our garden so we've got somewhere to put our new chicken house. I can't wait to get the actual animals! I've heard that it's best to have a cockerel to make the hens lay better, but I don't think we will because they're too noisy - not sure our neighbours would enjoy that :)

Head Burro

Thursday 19 January, 2006 at 1:55pm

Wow! What a beauty! Look at the spurs on him - I hope he proves worthy of them and you have many a chick from him :-)

Jane Perrone

Wednesday 25 January, 2006 at 7:03pm

He's gorgeous! I am very jealous. I would really like chickens but I am rarely at home when they'd need to be got up and put to bed, so I'll have to wait until I move to my own smallholding when I win the lottery!

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