Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Blood and Feathers

Yesterday I came home and saw Reuben Jr, Reuben's eldest (only) son, walking by the new chicken coop.  I was thinking, "we should just call him Jr." Then I noticed something confounding: he looked a lot like Reuben Sr. Several characteristics separated the two birds (Yes, chickens are birds): Reuben has large areas of white between his black nape and tail. Jr has black speckles and quite a bit of yellow in the same area. Reuben has long spurs and Jr has short ones. Jr makes up for his tiny tools with a larger comb and a spectacular tail. The biggest difference is that Reuben will let you walk up to him and Jr wont.
So, I walked up to the rooster. He did not attempt to run away. He had long spurs. Quick quiz: which rooster is this? Correct. Reuben. He had blood streaks on his back and wings. He had scabs on his comb. Apparently an unsanctioned cock fight happened while I was at school. Again, I was at school. I attended graduate critiques between 8 - 10 and immediately following the crits, I met with two colleagues at *Big City Coffee for breakfast. There were many witnesses.

Reuben appeared healthy otherwise. He was hopping onto fence posts and crowing. He was foraging. I half expected to find Jr dead, lying in a pool of blood. I found him looking the same as ever. I have yet to get close enough to see if he was injured.

Update: I saw Jr. His right leg and spur are completely bloody. Reuben did not show up for breakfast. When I found him he was sitting statue still in the pasture. I thought he had died standing. He moved when I approached but he was beaten to a pulp; covered in blood. I tried to catch him. Failed. I tried to catch Jr. I shut him in the coop with the hens then tried to catch him. He went berserk. I grabbed his tail (see photo) and he screamed. Before I could get a grip on his back his tail expatriated from Jr's body. Not sure what to do next but I loaded the gun.

Put Bullet on Reuben watch

Gotta go. Horses running free. Not ours.

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