Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Apollo Rising

I had a terrible dream last night that Apollo attacked me. It wasn't completely without basis in real life. If you look at my first posts you'll see a different rooster, Gandalf, who we got from my sister Joy's farm. We had a love/hate relationship. I LOVED him. He HATED me. I mean, he REALLY HATED me. There was nothing that rooster liked to do better than beat me up. I tried everything: being nice, fighting back, ignoring him. Nothing worked. So, I used a rake to keep him off me and we lived under a truce. Unless I wasn't near the rake. I still have a scar on my leg from the last time he attacked me.

He'd probably still be here, but he was overly affectionate with one of the hens to the point that she was naked. I mean, if we'd been inclined to eat her we wouldn't have needed to bother plucking her. She looked more like something you'd see in the meat aisle than an actual living, breathing chicken. I even made her a chicken saddle (a protective coat) and that didn't help. Finally we decided that enough was enough and we gave him to our friends the Elliotts who had a farm with LOTS of chickens. Stacey told me later that the hens were smitten with him, but that every now and then she'd catch him standing by the fence where she'd dumped him in. She said, "I think he misses you. It's like he's saying, `Can I go home now??'"

I was sad for days after he'd gone. I even missed his terrible crow. It was completely unreasonable. In about 3 weeks Sephera's feathers started to grow back in. In about 5 weeks I could barely recognize her. And in 7 weeks she had grown a beard! (Some of our other Aracaunas have beards, but her neck had always been so bare you'd never be able to tell she had one.) Then Stacey told me someone had given them an Aracauna rooster and did I want him?

I thought, "Yes! No!" She said she'd take him back if he didn't work out. So one morning I picked up Apollo. He's been WONDERFUL. He is gentle with the hens. He's getting more watchful as he settles in. His crow is decent, but more importantly he crows rather softly and doesn't crow much. (Gandalf used to start at around 4 and crow on and off - loudly - all day.) He's a little afraid of me so I move carefully when I'm around him. So far his attitude seems to be, "You don't bother me and I won't bother you."

And as you can see, he's beautiful. The hens loved him. General Sunshine followed him around his first day pecking at his feathers. He put up with her and for awhile she seemed to be the favorite. She was the only one laying at the time. They would always be perched side by side at night and Apollo would peck at anyone else who tried to get her coveted spot.

The best thing about Apollo is that he's made the older girls and the newer girls all into one big happy flock. And that's something crow about. (Ha! Did I really just say that??? I've been a writer too long! LOL!!!)

No comments:

Post a Comment