Monday, 15 August 2011

Time's Up

Today the babies were 18 weeks old, and it was "Time's Up" for 4 of them. 

Last week, when all three of us had been at the allotment sorting out separate runs for the girls and boys,  we had taken a look at the boys to see who would be going.  It would be much easier if we knew that they were all going in the end but, because we'll be keeping one of them,  it's means that we have to make the decision each time.

Firstly, we decided that the two more "runty" boys should go. Neither of them were going to make the grade.  They are also quite aggressive, partly because of their lowly place in the pecking order.    We also earmarked one of the big Welsh Black X boys, as he had been caught pecking a couple of the hens for no obvious reason.    For the fourth...well, that was a lot harder.  

We have 2 boys (not counting the "runty" pair) who are the spitting image of their dad.  We haven't decided yet whether we want to keep one of them, or one of the Welsh Black crosses.    Personally, I think it'll come down to temperament.    One of these 2 is top cockerel.  We aren't sure that he has the right temperament,  but we realise that taking him out will just cause a lot of in-fighting as the biys then jostle for top place.   

We debated whether to take the second Roo lookey-likey, or one of the Welsh Blacks.  In the end, we decided to take out the second Roo lookey-likey.   The Top Cockerel will be "safe" now until we come to a final decision, unless he demonstrates that he has too aggressive a temperament.

DH and OC (Other Chap) did the deed this morning, and DH came back with our 2 chickens.   DH always finds this difficult and time really hasn't made it easier.  

Once again I console myself with knowing that 
(a) They had a fantastic happy life
(b) They had a quick and pain free death
(c) They lived until they were 18 weeks, whereas if we were buying free range chicken that chook would have been only 8 - 14 weeks old...
(d) ...and we would not know for certain exactly what sort of free range life that chook would have had.

So, we're down to 9 Girls and 6 cockerels (plus 2 of a different breed being raised for us on a neighbouring plot).

1 comment:

  1. it's hard to choose who will stay and who will go but it sounds like you made a careful choice.