There will be blood

A.M.

Chicken drama. First, the wandering Dominique wandered again; when it was time to close them all up last night, she was missing from the perch. We tried not to be too worried, since she had done this once before. I have this image of Julie Andrews as Maria in Sound of Music, out on the hills and then remembering she is supposed to be somewhere. The other chickens are singing “How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?” as they push, shove and peck at each other (more than usual), positioning themselves on the perches—when you remove a chicken from the flock it throws them off until they re-establish their pecking order, so the absence of “Maria” may have resulted in some reshuffling.

This morning the Dominique was under the bird feeder again…much to the annoyance of the mourning doves and juncos (both ground-feeders) whose only opportunity to get bird seed is early morning, before the chickens are released—the chickens chase them away during the day. When we let out the rest of the chickens, we noticed Featherfoot had blood on his feathered foot. From everything we’ve read, this is very bad, because the chickens will now zero in on that blood spot and keep pecking. We saw it happen—a RI Red reached over and gave the spot a peck (twice). He has also had a few altercations with the other rooster, although those haven’t amounted to much. So now we may have to get rid of Featherfoot. But how? Most chicken keepers don’t want a rooster, even such a glamorous looking one. And he is colorful in appearance and personality, so we would miss him. I thought raising chickens would be easy.

P.M.

All the chickens are safely tucked away, and no blood was visible on Featherfoot’s foot this afternoon, so we will wait and see what happens (Cherisse feels I may be overreacting). Perhaps peace will reign!

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