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We have this white hen, she was supposed to be pure white leghorn. My friend's DH got pecked by her white leghorn rooster so he shot the rooster. She collected and gave me ten eggs to put in the incubator since they should still have been fertile. Seven of them hatched, I kept two and gave the rest to her. Those two 'leghorns' were hens who would lay a nest full of eggs and then promptly sit on them. Since when do leggerns go broody? I mean, like NEVER! It turns out there was also a feral rooster hanging around my friend's hens so our hatched out little white hens are half feral rooster and half white leg horn. Hens lay according to the genes they get from their sire, so these 'white leghorns' lay like a feral chicken. A few eggs seasonally and then they promptly sit on them. Sigh! One hen hatched out a dozen eggs, I gave her and all her chicks to someone else to deal with. There's still one white hen left. Next time she went broody, I took away those feral eggs (there's roosters that wander through here occasionally) and gave her some Americana eggs ("Easter egger" blue ones) and she hatched out two. One was a silver and black rooster and one was - I thought - a red hen. The silver and black rooster disappeared when he was about half grown, haven't a clue where he went. Red Hen turned into Ricky Rooster when she/he was about six months old. Grew tail feathers and started crowing. Arrgh!
So the two chickens here are now White Hen and Ricky Rooster. Ricky has been pretty mellow, but he did attack me once. I grabbed him, held him upside down and crowed at him. Then I proceeded to pet him and ruffle his feathers a lot. Held him for about ten minutes fussing with him all that time. Now he is much more wary of me and doesn't get aggressive at all. White hen, of course, will come eat out of my hand. Drives him nuts when she does and he's still too cautious to get close enough so she gets to pig out until I feel sorry for him and toss him some feed.
Since Ricky is a domestic breed of chicken, next time white hen sets, she will hatch out half aruacana/ one quarter white leg horn and one quarter feral chickens. Which hopefully will mean that the hens will lay a lot of blue eggs and not sit on them. We hope. But, she hasn't started a nest since Ricky has gotten old enough to be the sire.
We used to have a lot more chickens when we lived at a house more in the country. There were about a dozen in the back yard. We didn't really feed them much, just one scoop in the morning to get them to come down to the house and deliver eggs. There was a sliding window in the dining room so I put a bar from a closet under it along with a bit of rain gutter. There was a nest box off to the side for them to lay eggs in. It would be like a chicken aquarium with them all lined up on the other side of the glass waiting for someone to wake up and give them feed. I'd open the window, put a scoop of feed in the rain gutter and then get the eggs from the nest box. At night they'd all go put themselves away in their chicken house at the back of the property. We don't have any chicken eating varmints around here other than the neighbor's dogs so they could safely free range. A fence around the back yard was enough to keep them safe.
Chickens are pretty flexible as to their care and keeping and they're fun to watch. They do much more strange things than rabbits.
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