Thursday, July 31, 2008

Hen House Pandemonium

RT and Rhoda and Molly the polar bear dog and Tommy the Corgi Shepard cross arrived. We have been having a great time exploring the joint and eating fresh Veg and grass fed beef. Xena has been having a wonerful time with her new friends. Taking a particular liking to Tommy. Here she is giving him a slurp. Note the giant muscular body suspendend on short legs. Handy during the upcoming tale:


We went out to gather some eggs and water the chickens. What I didn't notice was when I moved the run earlier in the day I had left the gate shutter in the run to keep the chickens in the coop. I watered them and then got the eggs and started pounding on the back of the chicken coop to get them to come out in the run so that Rhoda could see them. Puzzled as to why they weren't flocking to the pile of goodies I had left them, I opened up the back bottom clean out door and was going to persuade them to move towards the light. From there on pandemonium reigned.

Tommy zipped through the door and was in the coop. The chickens in clucking, flapping panic, unable to escape. Until RT discovered the gate was keeping them from entering the run. He lifted the gate, the chickens squirted out the run, the Rooster in the lead, and Tommy in hot pursuit. Down the run he tunneled, his short legs an asset to his chicken napping single mindedness. He wasn’t listening to any exhortations from me or fazed by RT's surprise as he wittnessed a flock of chickens spurt out of the coop like white pillows through a ten horse fan - Tommy right after them - a dog intent on saving the world from the dreaded chicken curse.

Like a furry guided anti-chicken missle. Feathers flying, the cacophony reached a crescendo until I managed to knock one of the pop hole pails out and let the trapped chickens escape. Into the jaws of Molly and Xena. Well not exactly jaws. Xena just stood their imobile, puzzled: “ What-- you can do that?” and Molly was simply dogging the panicked rooster. The first one out of the run. "Don't worry girls I'll be back with help." Sure.

Curious about this dandy chicken strutting with his tail feathers flapping in the breeze, Molly kept following the rooster. No harm meant, no biting. From the Roosters perspective, however, judging by his panic--he was being chased by a polar bear with unbelievably large teeth. The Rooster made the safety of the tall grass and collapsed.

Right about then Matthew and Chief Joseph stopped their pickup on the driveway across from the chicken run. They had been cutting a tree for the sweat lodge fire from the bug kill pine in the upper field by the pond. Taking in the scene they got out to offer their assistance with the round up. Matthew saw the cowering Rooster hunkered, hiding motionless, in the grass and pronounced him dead. And then, miraculously, reached down and picked up the now squawking hideout and handed him to Jo-Ann. Now Jo-Ann, it turns out, knows a lot about psychologically damaged Chickens. She took the rooster, shushing his mad panic protestations by putting his head under her armpit. His clucking slowing to a some what calmer “clk clk”. Which in chicken talk is undoubtedly , “ Oh My God, I thought I was dead did you see the teeth on that polar bear.”

Eventually we managed to round up the chickens and restore peace and order. Tommy was dragged out of the coop, puzzled we didn’t really appreciate him doing his all out best to rid us of the deadly chicken menace.

Fortunately only one of the chickens was seriously injured. It was touch and go but today she is up and about sans tail feathers and with some bite marks on her back. Lounging about and eating and drinking. Not moving very fast.

Tommy has taken a wide bearth of the chicken runs in subsequent ventures to the great outdoors. Can't blame him for his chicken tyranny. He was just doing what comes naturally. And he did it with astonishing skill.

2 comments:

Carol Browne said...

Whoops! Glad the chickens and the rooster made it through this big event. Chickens can be pretty resilient. I saw a chicken get pelted once with a rock (accidentally...and it wasn't me.) right in the head, and it dropped like it was a gonner. But a few minutes later, it was awake and walking around. You just never know with those guys.

Ablom said...

The rooster actually got so worked up he fainted! The Chick sans tail feathers and bite marks on her back seems to be doing O.K. But Egg production seems to be down an egg..