recently my husband was at the feed store getting (you guessed it!) feed and supplies for the chickens. in the chick brooder outside, there were baby chicks and while he was waiting, he stopped to take a peep (:)) at them. Longhorn is a good source for baby chickens if you are looking for just a few chicks (rather than the lot of 25 that many online hatcheries require you to order). now, my husband is sort of a chicken snob, ordering from texas, iowa, specialty breeders to get unique egg colors from our flock, since most of our hens are chosen for egg color, size, and quality. this day, one chick in particular caught his eye, and when he was finished with his feed transaction, he asked ‘what’s the odd-looking chick?” the clerk replied, “it’s an oddball mixed breed from an incubator project”. “i think it’s a rooster,” he added. now as i’ve mentioned in the past, you generally can’t give roosters away, and labeling it thus would typically have been the kiss of death, but it was this little guy’s lucky day, because when the clerk said, “you can have ‘im if you want ‘im,” instead of averting his eyes and politely declining, my husband said, “okay!” and rescued him. he traveled to his new home in a spot-light bulb box. sigh. This chick has personality; it’s what made him stand out and, in the end, what saved him.
So, reasons to keep a possible rooster:
- it has a unique feature; this guy has a fluffy gray crest on his head and some perky tail feathers
- (s)he has a pretty trilling peep
- (s)he is petite; well, to call a spade a spade…is the runt of the litter, calling out to be saved.
Next issue: to name or not to name it? what would you do?