Thursday, May 9, 2013

Rooster politics and other fun observations from the chicken yard.

Living in the country has its benefits, one of which is being able to have our own chickens. Some folks are annoyed by the sound of a rooster crowing (and contrary to the old Warner Brother cartoons, roosters don't just crow when the sun rises). But for myself, the sound of roosters crowing and chickens cackling makes me feel right at home.

I grew up with chickens being a part of daily life. Feeding, watering and gathering eggs were just a few of the chores we completed on a daily basis. While I did grow some chickens for meat to raise money for a school function as a preferred version of chicken are egg-layers. I'm not picky about the variety of hen...just lay eggs. Oh and of course it goes without saying here too, chickens are hugely entertaining to watch.

Like every living thing, chickens have their own language. They alert each other to potential dangers, they announce freshly layed eggs, they communicate where the latest bit of savory food is located to each other and on and on.

Roosters on the other hand are a whole other ball of wax. When humans are present some roosters are very protective of "their girls" and others are very skiddish and evasive.  Shown in the photo above is our "main-barnyard-attraction" Mr. P Diddy. (Named by one of the kids because when he is in his defensive attack mode stance his neck puffs out...hence the name Puff Daddy or P Diddy for short...also loosely named after the rapper of the same name.)

P Diddy is especially comical to watch. He is most certainly a type-A personality rooster (if there is such a thing). This guy is busy, busy, busy ALL the time. Telling his girls about food he just found, or keeping a close eye on where everyone is in the barnyard, or keeping the other rooster (since we have two) at a safe distance and on and on. He's quite territorial and even has gone so far as to square off with me when I enter the barnyard (Not sure why he hasn't caught on that I'm there to just feed and water them. Bite the hand that feeds ya?).

If P Diddy were to run for political office...I am confident that his voice would sound EXACTLY like Foghorn Leghorn from the old Looney Tune Cartoons.
"pay attention son this is for your own good..."
If you need a reminder of what Foghorn Leghorn sounds like go here:

Yep, barnyard politics are alive and well amongst the chickens. I'm sure I'll be sharing more barnyard chicken stories in the near stay tuned. Oh, and I certainly will be painting some works that feature P Diddy and P Diddy Jr (the other rooster).

In the mean time, onward and upward for the arts!

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