So, on a whim, for a lark it seems, Greg decided he’d like to get all roosters for our last batch of meat birds. On the surface, and to the un-initiated like us, not a crazy decision. I mean, the hatchery offers them so really how bad could it be?! And they grow faster and bigger than the ladies. It all seems to make sense.
And yet, as we are discovering with our cou nu chickens, gender – contrary to some who might have it that sex-specific traits are merely cultural and learned – is a big deal when it comes to animals. On a farm, there are very few male animals, and there are very good reasons for this! Male animals are dicks! Real assholes! The ladies all perch up nice and safe, out of reach in the evenings while the males battle it out below them.
Walking into the meat bird coop in the morning, the damn SoB’s just start pecking at my feet. Really?!? That’s your first reaction to a giant walking into a room? Run up to him, peck his feet!? Unbelievable. Not entirely convinced of that as a successful survival strategy, but hell, what do I know? Right?
Have you ever been up close and personal with a bull? Rather unpleasant creatures; bent on our destruction. How about a ram? Huge balls and consequently a particularly testy disposition. The common fix is of course castration. I will not engage in this practice…at least not yet, that’s for sure. So, consequently, we will have to ‘dispose of’, to use rather more delicate language than is probably necessary, any and all males that make it through to almost-maturity.
It’s a shame though. It’s the male birds that have all the great plumage and colours. It’s the bulls and rams that have the best and most attractive horns and manes. Male ducks however…just straight up anti-social and ill-tempered. Nothing redeeming there.
So, in the great battle of the sexes taking place on farms and in backyards everywhere, it seems that the more passive and gentle ways of the fairer sex are by far the best way to stay alive. Aggression has no place on a farm and so is controlled either through the surgeons knife or the sharp blow of the axe. Harsh but true.