3 roosters are living in the garden
Three roosters are living in the garden this winter. It started with Fabian, out of desperation. Never mind he’s the lightweight of the roosters, he never let up. He fought with every rooster, either losing repeatedly to Mr. Sumatra and bouncing back for more, or hassling Jean-Marie Maran, the biggest but least aggressive guy. We tried him in the lathe house with the turkeys, but at the end of the day I found him wedged between two straw bales, only his tail showing, flattened and barely able to breathe. The turkeys didn’t like him. Finally we threw him into the garden, which for a chicken is much like Brer Rabbit and the briar patch. Plenty of tasty vegetables to eat, a fence on one side offering prime hen viewing, and on the other a covered deck with big windows offering the entertainment of what we usually call chicken tv. Humans eating breakfast, etc.
I tacked up a roost high under the porch eave of the chicken house building – at least it’s not the eave of our house, though it’s only ten feet away from the house – and hoisted him up there the first night. Soon he learned he could get us moving sooner in the morning – time to let out those hens, don’t you think? – by coming up to the window glass to crow at dawn. When Jean-Marie failed to hold his own with the other roosters, he joined Fabian, who magnanimously deigned to share his spacious deluxe quarters with his former tormentee. The trio was completed with the addition of Diego the Catalana. Fabian occasionally chases them, but with plenty of room to run things settle down quickly. When we plant the garden beds, we’ll cover seedlings until they grow taller than a rooster. They’ll eat low-hanging tomatoes and any tender new leaves, but they won’t inflict as much damage all summer as the hens would do in twenty minutes. It’s the scratching and digging of hens that really tears up a garden, and roosters just don’t.