He’s a beautiful rooster.
He’s a nice rooster. To me.
I’m not afraid of him.
He has never attacked me, stalked me, threatened me, watched me the way Mean Rooster did.
He’s gorgeous….and makes for gorgeous photos.
He spends a lot of time on the porch….
….often in the company of the crooked little hen.
He looks real comfy there, doesn’t he?
I spend a lot of time chasing him off the porch and trying to keep him off, but Dookie and Boomer need to come and go from the porch and Dr. Jekyll and the crooked little hen take advantage and sneak back up.
Gentlemanly as he is to me, he’s not really a nice rooster. He’s also Mr. Hyde.
He’s mean to the other roosters. He’s a mistake in a batch of (we hoped) sexed chicks from the spring. I originally thought he was a male Golden Comet, but I believe he’s a White Leghorn now that he’s grown. He’s the one I called Refund. Mean Rooster ran him around the yard and put him in his place back then. Here he is in his younger days, shortly after his chicken yard graduation.
He had yet to grow into his wattle and comb back then, but Mr. Hyde plotted and planned and bided his time while Mean Rooster ruled the roost with his steely beak. And when Mean Rooster was gone, Mr. Hyde took over.
Most of the time, I let the roosters settle their own business. Chickens have a pecking order and I feel it’s best in most cases to leave them alone to conduct their affairs according to their nature. I watch them, when I can. Of course, I can’t watch them all the time. But….
Several weeks ago, not long after Mean Rooster died, I was sitting on the porch and had my camera in my hand. I saw Mr. Hyde chasing one of the red roosters. I take photos and video all the time–you never know what’s going to happen with animals. Sometimes it turns out cute and I use it. More often than not, it turns out to be nothing and it never sees the light of day. I shot this video from the porch in a sort of random mode at the time. I just happened to be there and Mr. Hyde just happened to be chasing another rooster. You’ll notice that in the first half of the video, I’m recording from the porch. Around the middle of the video, you’ll see I’ve moved down to the gate of the goat yard. By that point, I was getting worried about the red rooster and was deciding whether or not to intervene. In the last section of the video, I’ve gone through the gate and followed Mr. Hyde and the red rooster into the goat pen. The red rooster was trying to hide under an old table the goats climb on while Mr. Hyde was pecking him to death. I hesitated for a few more seconds, flashbacking to Mean Rooster, considering whether or not intervening in the middle of one rooster establishing his dominance over another rooster was going to result in an attack on me and whether or not I needed to find a broom or rake before intervening. Eventually I decided to go ahead and I kicked Mr. Hyde away from the red rooster with my boot. He didn’t turn any of his aggression on me at all. With me, he’s Dr. Jekyll all the way.
WARNING: This is a video of real roosters acting like real roosters. They aren’t nice to each other. You may not want to watch.
I discovered that the red rooster had been bleeding when I looked down at my jeans after I’d carried him to the chicken yard.
For his safety, I shut him up in the chicken yard for the rest of that day.
He recovered just fine, by the way, though I believe if I hadn’t rescued him, Mr. Hyde would have killed him. I would have just found the red rooster under that little table and would have had no idea what happened to him. I haven’t seen Mr. Hyde go after him again, and I figure it was just part of settling the new pecking order post-Mean Rooster. But, the entire incident has left me wondering ever since……
Did Mr. Hyde kill Mean Rooster?