Tempers are flaring

Cock-fighting was outlawed in England and Wales in 1835 – but no-one seems to have told my lot that. I thought there was going to be trouble between John Wayne, the Pekin Bantam and the Nameless Leghorn x Buff Orpington cockerel who we bred last summer and is destined for the pot, on Saturday afternoon as Nameless was making a play for Irene, our Light Sussex x Dorking hen, but for some unknown reason, John decided that Irene was his and saw The Nameless One off. Later that afternoon, when I went back to top up their food and water, I found the pair in the middle of an extremely bloody fight. Every time they broke up, after a few minutes one would provoke the other and it would start again – with me unable to get near them.

Not wanting to let things run their course, I didn’t really have many options but then John sought refuge in the Eglu Cube and Dolly rushed in after him so I quickly shut the door! Just as I was trying to work out how on earth I would catch them (J and D are not exactly people-chickens and have never let any of us get near them), John’s nerve failed him altogether and he rushed upstairs to the nest box, where I quickly shut them in.

We’ve got a somewhat leaky but sturdy wooden ark that gets used in emergencies (like this) so I set it up for them, getting straw for a bed and using dog bowls and margarine tubs for water, corn and layers’ pellets, and then carefully opened the Cube’s nest box door and moved them both to the wooden ark. I took the opportunity to check John’s wounds, and he seemed ok. Most of the damage was to his head, especially the comb, but it was quite superficial. I was worried about his wing, as The Nameless One spent a lot of time sitting on John’s back and pounding him from above, but no feathers or bones were broken, just ruffled. Neither of the pair were at all happy with the new arrangement, but when the opportunity presents itself, tough luck!

I spent most of yesterday (as in over twelve hours) at work so they’ve been in the ark since Saturday afternoon and John and The Nameless One are still trying to fight through the wire on the ark. I want to let them out again but I’m pretty confident that they’ll just pick up where they left off the moment I do so. I’m not working tonight and won’t be in a hurry to get anywhere, so I might give it a go at dusk and just open their door. If they do fight again, at least the Pekins will have somewhere safe to sleep tonight!

If anyone wants a pair of partridge Pekin Bantams, do let me know as I’ve got way too many cockerels and The Nameless One isn’t destined to meet his end until I’ve had the chance to learn how to do the deed properly so he doesn’t suffer needlessly. Unless someone can show me how to do that, instead?!


8 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by suzy2110 on 19 January 2009 at 1:02 pm

    Love their names, ha ha! My friend has two chickens called Sean Henn and Cluck Norris. 😀

    What is it with your creatures at the moment? The chucks should take a leaf out of the pigs’ book and make love, not war!

  2. I strongly suggest you send the goings on with your brood, pigs and all, to the BBC. I can see it being the next hit sitcom, LOL.

  3. Cat and dog have nothing on your lot :-)Least l followed it easier. I agree that BBC should base soaps on your lot l would watch soaps then. I am awaiting the night time instalment of the Bailey gang that caused havoc in your last blog.

    As to the deed. Contact Stoney at Musings of a Stonehead he dispatched one of his hens in the last write up.

  4. Posted by welshpurpletree on 19 January 2009 at 6:50 pm

    Sounds like all your animals are giving you the run around at the moment. At least you had a way of seperating them.

    Just wondering are you still wanting the bags of bark/poo?

  5. Posted by compostwoman on 19 January 2009 at 6:52 pm

    I have the same problem now with Long John Silver Dorking and Cap’t Flint…I have had to separate them out at night , as they were trying to kill eachother if inside the run together…at least outside they have lots of space, and usually one of the older girls comes over and pecks some sense into them both…..

    Must be spring…..

  6. Suzy, all our chooks have pretty random names. I’ve been trying to get some decent photos of them all to do a proper intro but the damn things won’t pose! I may browse through the ones I’ve got an do an intro anyway – looks as though it’s going to pee it down for the next few days and that would be a great excuse to stay indoors!

    Margaret LOL @ the idea of the sausage and egg brigade sit com! Fantastic idea!

    Vetnurse, all has been quiet on the piggie front. I think they all got it out of their systems, so to speak, and they spent al of today asleep in the sun. Pigs!

    As to the deed, Stonehead uses the humane dispatcher, but as I don’t have one I need to learn how to do it by hand.

    WPT, yes please to the bark and poo! I sank up to my ankles in one are of the field so anything to soak up or hide the mud is required! I did want to come up yesterday morning but the mammoth shift at work got in the way. I’ll email you!

    Compostwoman, I wish my girls would knock some sense into the boys. Dolly just hid and the others stood around clucking “fight, fight”! The other two boys, Fat Boy and Flint joined in whenever it looked as though they wouldn’t get hurt…

    I didn’t let John and Dolly out tonight, after all, as John and Nameless spent the afternoon squaring up to one another through the wire of J and D’s ark. So, tomorrow I shall go back to splitting the run in two, one half for the big chooks and one for the Silkies and bantams. At least that way, there’ll be two cockerels in each half, with the fighters separated by electric netting!

  7. […] Bantams and Silkies, however, were not very pleased. After the Big Fight, I decided that I would never be able to put the bantams back with the big chooks, and that they […]

  8. its all good fun and games, though…and it keeps us on our toes!

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