Well, Tikka the chick who hatched at Easter at Watermill Cottages, has turned into a handsome cockerel with a splendid plumey tail just like his Dad, The Red Admiral. Tikka’s Mum is a white Leghorn (pronounced L’gorn, looks like a cartoon road runner) called Marigold because she looks like she’s got a rubber glove on her head.
|Marigold, Mum, and Tikka|
Tikka has turned out to have the Rhode Island Red russet breast which is speckled with soft grey; his magnificent tail, is pure grey. His voice is breaking, producing rather squeaky cock-crows which are increasing in consistency and decreasing in warble.
|The Red Admiral|
As Tikka hatched in a duck nest and was raised by us (we didn’t want the duck to leave her eggs; hens take 21 days and Muscovy ducks 34 days to hatch) we found some two day old chicks to keep him company so he was socialised as a chicken not a human. They are pretty tame and still come running when I call them, and RonnieBarker and The Other One will happily let me cuddle them and enjoy perching on my wellies.
Of the four chicks we bought, Versarchie with the fabulous feathers is a cockerel, Pingu is a hen and RonnieBarker and The Other One we’re not sure about yet. If they start laying eggs before the end of the month then I’ll be right about my hunch that they’re girls… The Red Admiral has done some tango around them so I’m going with his sense.
We think RB and TOO are Australorps, Versarchie (we don’t want a copyright issue do we) has some Wyandotte in there and Pingu – who knows, though all possibly have some Bantam in there somewhere as they’re small.
|Rita and Ora|
A few weeks ago, Rita the Buff Orpington, hatched a couple of chicks though one was too weak and died when its yolk sac food had run out as it couldn’t eat. The survivor is a feisty auburn chick which is just beginning to grow adult feathers. It’s with Rita in the fruit cage which we’re using as a broody coop as it’s netted to stop overhead predator attacks.
We’ve called the chick ‘Ora’ thanks to Megan in Quack Cottage who informed me there’s a pop star called Rita Ora… fancy! I like to think it alludes to her golden colouring …