Strange Bird

Back before we lived on Sam Browning, before we had chickens even, Tori our oldest loved to hear this certain story about farm animals.  She’d try her best to imitate the sounds of each animal but seemed to have a problem with roosters in particular, you see her Cock-A-Doodle-Doo came out, “Cracker Noodle Doo.” She’s long since outgrown her mispronunciation, something I admit I’m a little sad about, but now it seems that our family has a new set of rooster problems.  Too danged many of them!

If you recall several months back when our new egg layers were just fluff balls living under lamps I mentioned that the mail order poultry companies had a tendency to add in extra baby roosters to fill in gaps on small orders.  Live Action Toe Warmers is what I called them at the time.  Consequently a phrase made prior to my knowledge of the Turtle Man’s catch phase, so no infringement intended.  We now call them a nuisance and despite all the warm fuzzy feelings I had for the little guys in their baby days I’m starting to realize why they can be seen as expendable to some.  The teen years have hit and they do little more than fight with each other and worry the heck out of the hens. 

Oh now don’t get me wrong, both Dennis and I can see the need to have a few of them.  There’s still the notion floating around that we may hatch a few chicks ourselves but the fact remains that seven roosters are just too many.  We’ve pretty much got them down to three that we plan to keep.  George, short for Georgio Armani, is a stately and somewhat conceited guy that was actually given to Dennis when another chicken enthusiast had the same rooster overcrowding problem.  Then there’s Walt Whitman, named for my favorite author, who is destined to create offspring that can in turn produce my coveted chocolate brown eggs.  The last one is yet to be determined but will no doubt be one of the Easter Egger breed that lays light greenish blue eggs, this leaves four toe warmers to find new homes.  That said I’m making it known that the Morgeson Family will gladly adopt out these fellows to anyone wanting to awake to the heartwarming sound of “Cracker Noodle Doo” each morning. If you’re interested you can reach Dennis at the Washington County Extension Office to make arrangements.

With that out of the way I’m free to wax poetic about how wonderful the weather has been.  It’s hard not to notice that it’s feeling more and more like porch weather.  While I’m still a little sad about not having a real snow I can’t knock the fact that I can walk downtown to do errands with no coat on.  Dennis is obviously ecstatic.  We have a stack of mail order seed catalogues so big that they could be recreated into a tree.  I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little into it myself.  While I don’t foresee us having any more free time than last year I still hope for some cutting beds.  I’m also hoping for a decent crop of blackberries and raspberries, the new vines don’t produce much their first year and our last jar of jam is long gone.  Sigh.

Then there’s my affinity for farm supply stores.  I’m not really sure why I like them so much.  It’s not like we have this massive homestead.  All the same I love farming stores and in the spring even more so.  Right now they’re getting in truckloads of new gardening stuff, animal stuff, seeds, bird feeders, boots, boot scrapers and odd and end metal flowers and such that despite all my claims of having taste call to me, “Amy, oh Amy, you need three metal sunflowers to stick in the landscaping out front because you know there won’t be any flowers there for awhile.”  Really, they’re like mermaids, I can’t help myself when I hear their siren song.  While I won’t plug any store in particular I just want to say, if you’re feeling blue, might I suggest you take a stroll through one of our many fine local farm stores?  It can do wonders to get your spirits up.

Now that I’ve let slip what a strange bird I am I’ll wrap this up with one more note on real birds.  While the roosters are annoying teenagers the hens are doing more than enough to earn their keep.  We’re just starting to realize that with chickens especially you need to be careful what you wish for.  We may need a second refrigerator, or at least a ton of new recipes, to keep up with egg production!  I couldn’t be happier though, we have blue eggs, green eggs, light brown, tan, speckled and one day soon hopefully we’ll have deep dark chocolate brown eggs!  All in time for Easter and my plans to create decorative blown egg ornaments.  Yeah…I really am weird.