Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Taking out the trash


“See, I told you he had a real gun”, the older of our boys said to his younger brother.  The three of us were huddled around the kitchen table.  Looking with not a small amount of awe at my Escort Magnum semi-automatic shotgun laid out before us.

In my last post on this topic I said we had decided to load the dice and get rid of Horace the rooster’s tormentors.  The boys were comfortable with the concept of getting rid of “naughty” animals.  Our daughter wasn’t so impressed.  But this wasn’t a time for compassion.  If we didn’t shoot Horace’s sons then they would kill him.  Simple as that.  We had made our choice.

My wife and I stepped out into the driving rain, shoulder to shoulder, feeling very much like the marshall and his deputy.  Ready to face whatever those chickens had for us.  It was one of those unreal situations.  Our daughter upset in her room.  The two boys watching wide eyed from inside the house.  Their faces pressed against the window pane.

It didn’t take very long at all.  We chased the flock around like a couple of geriatric sheep dogs.  Separated them enough so I could draw a bead on a rooster.  Then kabam!

The usual procedure if you are a rooster and you are hit at close range with #3 steel shot is to leap a metre in the air and land in a feathery heap.  Which is exactly what they did.  After seeing their alpha males destroyed in front of the their eyes, some of the hens crawled as far as they could into the buxus hedging.  Just like Horace did a while back.  I wonder why?

It took the flock a while to recover after that.  The hens were a bit slow laying for a week or so.  And Horace was still pretty quiet.  Maybe he didn’t want to crow too loudly in case the other roosters heard him.  We knew he had nothing to worry about.  Sure enough, after a week or two he was back in the saddle.  Strutting around proudly.

Everything back to normal at last.

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