Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Little Early Morning Psychoanalysis

The Littles finally conquered their paralyzing fear of Old Calico Jack and realized they must leave the coop in order to get their fair share of the snacks. Now they come bursting out of the door like popcorn in the morning. Only after Jack and his ladies of course. Otherwise they get pecked in the head. So many rules to follow. So many social cues to learn. It's not easy being at the bottom of the pecking order no matter what species you are.

But it's particularly difficult if you don't have a good role model. The Littles have no Mama. They are interlopers. Their only nearby maternal example is Pearl with her two little ones. Pearl sat diligently on her nest and hatched her babies. She warmed them for the first few days, taught them how to scratch around for food and then threw them out on the street. She's the Rosanne Arnold of the chicken world. She's about as nurturing as a snake. Her own babies run from her.

Yet those babies stay outside with the rest of the flock and are a step up on the social ladder. They just keep their distance from Old Jack and his ladies. Which means they get plenty of exercise. Every photo of them is blurry since they're always on the run. They are an accepted part of the flock, but have been taught their place and they are wild as March hares because of it.

On the other side of the coop we have Polly and her babies. Polly has turned out to be an excellent mother. Even though her babies are nearly fully grown she still attends to their needs, protects them and leads them in their daily activities. The three of them are inseparable. Amazingly, Prius and her yet-to-be-named sister are now fully accepted members of society complete with perching privileges. You would hardly know they were newbies.

Interesting, very interesting. It seems it really is all about who you know.

(There were too many good suggestions from yesterday's post. I can't make up my mind. Please help me out and take a moment to vote for your favorite name in the poll on the left.)


LDWatkins said...

Love the post, the flow, the insights into nature, chicken and otherwise! Great.

Unknown said...

Aww...Phoebe didn't make the cut! That's okay....I'll use it for one of my girls. Now I need 7 more names.;D

Funny post...and oh how true.

StitchinByTheLake said...

What an interesting post - I bet you learn a lot from watching them. And how funny that one is a good mother and the other isn't. Just like people! blessings, marlene