Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Good Morning Chickens!

On the weeks I work, the first thing I do when I come home in the morning is let the chooks out into their run. They explode in a flurry of feathers then settle down and get busy foraging. After a bit of breakfast, the birds will come over to me and say good morning and some will sit on my knee or shoulder. This morning, Silver sat on my knee for the longest time just relaxing and being a nice boy.

Derek made an astute observation yesterday. We have 13 Buff Orpingtons. Orpingtons are supposed to have white legs, not yellow. There is this one little "Orpington" with very yellow legs. Here she is standing next to big Roo, who is a Barred Rock. Note the bright yellow legs both have. Derek thinks that the hatchery sent me a Buff Rock by mistake. It would be very easy to mix up the two breeds. What do the chicken breed experts think? Do I have one odd ball Buff Rock pullet? If so, I will keep her.

My big Barred Rock rooster Roo crowed for the first time this morning! I was very surprised and delighted. I was busy sweeping up chicken poo inside the coop as I do each morning when I heard a RRRRRrrrrrrrrrrooooo! coming from the pen. I thought that one of the girls might be getting picked on so I looked out the window. There wasn't any trouble that I could see. Out of the corner of my eye I saw Roo take a deep breath and arch his neck to crow and then he belted out another RRRRRrrrrrrrrrrooooo! My boy was crowing! He was very loud and very deep. I should have known he'd turn out to be a bass, which is good! I chuckled as I watched him make a few more attempts then ran to get my camera hoping to capture the momentous occasion on video. Alas, he gave up crowing practice as soon as I came back. There's always tomorrow, so I'll plan to try again when I get home. In the meantime, here's a video of my nice Hamburg, Silver, sitting on my knee. I love his expression. Doesn't he look like he's saying, "A little more to the left!"


  1. I have five roosters and they are all crowing. I never get tired of that sound! I am going to have to do something about all these roos! I can't bring myself to butcher them, maybe somebody will trade me for some of them.

    I scrounged a little and found a discussion about yellow-legged Buff Orps. They were saying that it is very rare, but most likely you have a buff rock. I have three little buff orps now! They are about a month old, and darling!

  2. Oh, and another BTW, one out of two of my Buff Orps has yellow legs, too! I never realized until I read about yours and went out to check. But everything else is exactly the same, in fact, I was never able to tell them apart. Duh, just had to look at the legs.

  3. Wonderful video, Amy! I wish Hamburger would let me hold him like that... he'll let me get close enough to pick him up, but after a few seconds, he's ready to get back on the ground QUICK! (Humphh... guess he'd rather be with Sarge and the girls than me...)

  4. Don, thanks for scrounging for info for me. The little yellow-legged pullet has a personality that matches the Rock profile. She zips around always looking for food and she's an excellent forager. Now we just have to come up with a name for her! I wish I could help you out with your roosters but I have 3 too many myself. We will butcher them.

    Susan, I know what you mean. I never really paid attention until my son pointed it out to me. Then I practically slapped myself in the forehead! I always felt there was one odd bird (or several) but couldn't put my finger on it.

    Paula, Silver would rather not be picked up. He will hop or fly up to perch on us though. It has to be on HIS terms, not ours! Once he's settled on my knee I can pet him at will. I love the way his wattles feel and he seems to like getting petted. We lucked out getting him as our freebie chick from McMurray's. We all love him.

  5. That is a great video! I hope my new little chicks are just as sweet! A couple will just sit in my hand as long as I let them... I have a couple Buff Orpingtons and they have yellowy legs but they aren't quite 3 weeks old yet so maybe they will change??

  6. Hey Amy, glad to hear you are laughing again. I've been thinking about you almost every day. I'm heading out on a trip back east, so if you don't hear from me for a couple of weeks, never fear, I will be back to check on you and the chooks!

  7. Silver is one handsome boy!

    You so remind me of me sitting outside with a chicken on your lap, arm, or shoulder.
    My husband thinks I'm a little nutty, but it's such a relaxing and calming experience, sort of like watching fish. I love hanging out with my 'chooks', too.

  8. Amy, the other differences I found were the Buff Rock's(?)tail sticks up more and the comb and wattles are a little pinker. What about yours?

  9. Goodness Amy, your chickens~ and rooster, are beautiful! I love the pattern in his feathering. His affection for you shows how much love you give them. It's like the wise old words in the old Beatles song-In the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make. So true, huh? :)

  10. Shannon, my birds changed a lot as they grew. It's amazing how much they can change just in 24 hours!

    Kathie, you are so sweet. Yes, I am feeling better this week. I think we can see the light at the end of the tunnel now. Thanks for your kind words, and have a wonderful trip!

    Twinville, spending time with my birds is one of the things I look forward to each day. I can feel myself relax and unwind as I watch them.

    Susan, I looked for the differences you mentioned and I'm not sure about the tail thing because they can change their tail positions. However, I do notice a difference in the comb and wattle colors. The Rocks seem to have a slightly darker red color in the face too. Very interesting! I read that Rocks have tighter feathering too. What do you think?

    Mare, thank you for such a nice comment, and yes it is very true. I love animals of all sorts. I often prefer the company of animals to the company of people.


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