Ladies and gentleman! I present to you Magic! The chicken! I’ll explain the name later.
Now, if you don’t have chickens or know much about them, I am here to tell you they are strange and wonderful and unpredictable. They do, after all, share DNA with dinosaurs. This little tidbit caused me to shift in my computer chair every time that thought crossed my mind, but now I’ve gotten used to it. My mind screamed Raptor, Raptor! Which is all the fault of the movie Jurassic Park, right?
We got chickens so we’d have fresh eggs to eat. We bought baby girl chickens, each a different breed. This has turned out well for the most part. One of our girls who we named Liz is interesting. At one and a half years old, she began emitting throaty noises at dawn. I wondered if she’d taken up smoking since her voice had become low and raspy. Eventually we realized she was doing her best to crow. Is Liz is a lesbian? She lays nice eggs and we’re not calling in a chicken psychologist or anything. I don’t think she is conflicted and seems okay with her identity. No worries. Meet Liz.
The molting of chickens a challenge is. (Yoda said that) It’s when they lose their feathers in sketchy places and look like chickens who’ve crossed the road. I guess it’s some form of renewal, but we do feel bad for them for a short time. Then we get mad at them since they don’t lay eggs whilst going through the molt. No matter how many articles I’ve read, my chickens don’t line up with any normal molting schedules. No, these chickens molt for fun or for some other reason I completely don’t get. Most chickens molt twice or once a year. I am not even going to show you a picture of a molting chicken, but I will introduce you to Henny Penny who takes good care of herself. A poster girl. Showy and white, but our most skittish chicken who looks nervously up at the sky a lot. Shoulda named her Chicken Little.
Aunt Corinne, one of my farming relatives, thoroughly stumped, told me “Why, I’ve never heard of naming chickens.” Just because we included their photos and sent their love along with ours on our Christmas cards seemed to perplex her. Myself I envision a row of tiny urns lining the mantel when our chickens have left this earth. Meet Rock Star, (Roxy).
We saved her life after an excitable puppy nailed her. She was on her back kicking, unable to get up when we found her. She lived inside with us in the TV room on a heating pad in the dark for a few days breathing unevenly. One morning, much to our relief, we discovered Roxy up and at ‘em. These days Rock Star is the friendliest and tamest. Does she know we saved her? I think so. Then there is Dippy.
Dippy so named for “dippy eggs” which are something the lovely English do with their lovely eggs. And of course dippy eggs are set in special lovely pedestals for serving. Lovely “little soldiers” must be created from pieces of toast to dip, etc. It’s a perfect example of the lovely English being English. And I mean that in a GOOD and lovely way. Next chicken on board would be Legs.
Legs is named after my mother whose nickname was “Legs.” A Buff Orpington is our “Legs”. I love her honey-gold color. My husband and I were told chickens are great for keeping flies under control. We believe everything we’re told. Two days ago he watched Legs endeavor to make a hit on a fly. Failing at an attempt to hurry, she waddled toward the fly, stumbled, and missed by a long shot. “She is too fat,” I told him. Which she is because we feed them obsessively even when we try not to. They look so cute and happy when chowing down. Peck peck! Scratch scratch! Okay, here is Zsa Zsa.
My web designer put a picture of Zsa Zsa on my site. So you’ve seen her if you ever clicked on the “contact me” place on my home page. Hmm, her name. This may be cryptic, but there is book out there called “Captain Underpants and The Perilous Plot of Professor Poopypants.” Code is involved. Name changing is the outcome of working the code. Long story short, my name is Zsa Zsa Gizzard-chunks according to the Professor. And since I have floppy moppy hair, someone named this chicken Zsa Zsa. You can bet it was NOT me. She can’t see very well through her doo and is easily confused. Enough of that. Next up is O.P. 201
Good ol’ O.P. 201 happens to be named after a certain form used by FedEx Ground delivery drivers. Don’t ask.
Another responsibility as chicken owners is dusting their butts, called “vents” in chicken language, with bug powder to keep their bottoms healthy. Catching chickens can be an event in itself. Once caught, the catcher turns the chicken, well, bottoms up and the duster shakes the powder on. Pollyanna and husband Andy, stalked them down, then the lovely Andy (English guy) manipulated rear ends into position for Doctor Steve to medicate. Kinda weird. But, hey, somebody’s got to do it.
During “The Time of Molt” (sounds sort of important or holy when put that way) we’ve almost given in to despair. They’ll never lay again. How can this be, they’re only two years old? What’s WRONG with them? AND THEN . . . .
On a certain morning a chicken appeared from nowhere. Lo and behold, at the appearance of this chicken our own chickens started laying eggs once more. We’d been sent a magic chicken. She remains magic to this day. Here is a picture of Magic,
watching from one of her hide-outs, doing her thing.