Coming home from vacation in an ideal world has everything is as you left it, animals happy, bed made, with a little time to unwind before heading back to real life. This was not our reentry scenario from Belize. We arrived back in Seattle late on Saturday night and crashed at an airport hotel. The next morning I headed off to help host a baby shower for a dear friend (even though all I really wanted to do was go home!) and Matt ferried back to Vashon. What greeted him were two happy, buffet fat cats mewing for love, 4 clucking hens…and a rooster on his last breath.
Not a fun situation to find. Poor Matt called me and we both agreed that Cesar needed to be put down since he was clearly not in a state to recover. We suspect that he (like our other gal Holly) was nursing some injury from before we adopted them. His wing was not very functional and towards the end of January was losing his balance. Poor guy.
The ladies looked lost without their leader, and honestly we like having a rooster around to protect the flock when they are ranging. So we set out on a quest to find our new roo. Luckily roosters seem to be in plentiful supply…even nice ones.
There were at least 6 offered up to us on the island and this weekend we picked up our new dude. He was the first one we visited, and were really impressed by his size (he is HUGE!) with a beautiful bright red comb and waddle, and was happily eating snacks out of little kids hands. Niceness is key (although this could change, we do know that) so the interaction with kids was a good sign. We saw a few other roosters but they were all bantams…although cute, they were not well socialized and we like the size of the first guy.
That evening we returned after dusk to pick him up. He spent the night in a cage in the lower part of the coop, and in the morning we were greeted by a very confused guy calling out his new home location to the world. We let him out and the ladies all trooped down the stairs.
We were prepared for a fight, or fear, or pretty much anything…what we saw was Helen (our head hen) immediately run up to the rooster, bow down, and then follow him everywhere! All the ladies are smitten. It is too funny.
We spent all of Sunday out in the yard (heck yea, 55 degree February!) and he loves to follow us around. During lunch (in the yard) he was constantly begging for handouts. He likes Fritos. No name yet, but I think Matt is leaning towards, Goliath.
He is settling in with the hens and we are so happy have him on our homestead. The girls are much more organized, and we feel better about them being safe free ranging during the day. Pre-dawn alarm clock crows are becoming normal, and we just really like our dude.
And eggs…man oh man are the girls happy to have more daylight hours! Yesterday was our first 3 egg day…3/4 are laying now. Rita lays beautiful blue eggs, Helen a dark brown (sometimes spotted) and Belle a light brown. Beautiful and so so yummy!