Sunday, September 27, 2009

Boy and his Chickens

This picture was taken in 1897, and shows a boy with his two chickens. He looks to be a shoeshine boy. Maybe someone payed him for a shoeshine with chickens? We may never know for sure.

Domestic Update:

The new chickies are doing great. It has only been two days, but we have already decided these chickens will be for eggs, not for the frying pan. I would not be able to bring myself to lower the axe on one, so we will continue to buy our chicken at the grocery store, and enjoy the eggs from these little guys. When we got the chickens, they were one day old. It is amazing how they come right out of the egg knowing everything they need to know. They run right over to the water and start drinking. They run right over to the food tray and eat. Then they run around and scratch and peck and scratch and peck. They are on wood chips over newspaper, so the chances of finding something good are nil, but yet on day one they know that chickens should scratch and peck. I am very happy with both the chickies and the peacocks. Birds make very good pets. They are very friendly, and sociable with people. When I get home, you can see the peacocks looking out the window, waiting for me to bring them something. Also, birds pretty much take care of themselves. They are much easier pets than dogs or cats.

We used to have a little parakeet named blueboy. Blueboy passed away last year, but we had had him for about 9 years. He was a good talker, and could say about 20 different things. He was a very smart little bird. We would leave his cage door open, so he pretty much had free reign in the house. We also had a little shiatsu dog. The bird would get on the floor, and start herding the dog around the house. When the bird got on the floor, he would start chasing the dog around barking. Yes, the bird would bark at the dog, and the dog did not like it. Then, when the bird had the dog cornered, the bird would start saying "Bad Dog, Bad Dog". Then the dog would cower down with its tail between its leg. That was really something funny to watch. The bird would also fly down onto the table when we were eating. He would walk around the table and takes bites of food off our plate of the things he liked. He never walked on the food, but would walk in a circle around the plate. He loved Chili, scrambled eggs, salad, chicken, and bell peppers. If we took the bird in the car somewhere, and went through a drive through at a fast food place, the bird would bark real loud at the fast food attendant. He had seen the dogs do that once, so whenever we went through the drive through he would bark.

Most people get two parakeets as pets. The problem with this is that they bond with each other, and then pretty much will never talk. If you just get one, they bond with you, and learn to talk and do all these other interesting things.

I think birds have pretty much been the best pets that I have had.


  1. Congrats on yesterday's win. What's the score now? My mother used to tell the story of the time she was told NOT to go in the chicken house but she did anyway. She loved those chickens on her Uncle Tude's farm. Later at dinner she couldn't sit still, jiggling all around. Her mother said, "Velma, were you in the chicken coop?" Well, yes. She was covered with lice.

  2. Your parakeet sounded like a blast. Smart also, with the ability to harass the dog with his barking and chasing.

    I laughed out loud while I was reading you blog today.

    Thanks for the good time


  3. I don' think your "little guys" will be producing too many eggs...

  4. My maternal grandparents had a parakeet named Mickey. Among various things he could say were "I'm a damn Democrat," and "Papa hid a bottle."

  5. I have two parakeets named Mojo and Karma. You are right, the two have bonded to each other and really aren't much interested in humans. However they do get very excited when I come home from work, like they are really happy to see me. Last year Mojo and Karma mated and Karma laid 15 eggs before I finally decided I'd better get Mojo out of there or all that egg laying would kill Karma. So I put their cages side by side, and they would spend every day on the side of their separate cages just looking at each other. Karma rejected her eggs and would sit on them anymore, so of course, no babies. Finally after about two weeks of them pining away for each other I put Mojo back in Karma's cage. They are happy as can be, but they no longer mate. Do you suppose they are smart enough to know I might separate them if they do?

    I also have a miniature Schnauzer named Mrs. Weasley, a Siamese cat named Giovanni but we call him by his mob name, Fat Tony. And I just acquired another cat named Smudge. Her owner, my friend Ron,passed away last month and Smudge hid in his house, no one could find her. So I took a flashlight over and kept shining it on the walls, knowing one of her most favorite games is to chase the light. Sure enough she popped her head up out of the closet and I took her home. No one else wanted her and she's a fond reminder of my dear friend Ron.

  6. You Tractor points must be climbing faster than ever with the new chicks.
    We have not had an update on the tractor process of late.

  7. Love the bird story! I had a parakeet named Nicky when I was about 13. Such a smart bird! We gave him free rein in the house, too, though if he ever went beyond the living room or kitchen, he was terrified.

    He love watermelon, though it gave him diarrhea, and angel food cake, and would also walk around the kitchen table to see what we had to eat. My dad used to sneak up on him at the mirror and grab his tailfeathers between two fingers and tug gently, all the while saying "Ha,ha,ha, I got your tailfeathers!" Nicky learned to swoop down over Daddy's glass of tea during supper yelling "hahaha".

    I'll bet he could have learned to bark had he been exposed to it!

  8. I had a parakeet once. It wasn't very people friendly as it had belonged to a five year old boy before me. It had the freedom of the house during the day, while the two cats were locked in the bathroom. There was a 1 inch gap between the bathroom door and the floor. The bird apparently discovered he could play with the cats through that gap. One day I opened the bathroom door to find two napping cats and some pretty green feathers on the floor.

  9. My mom used to have a parrot. Walter never learned to talk, but he was a whistling fool. He'd whistle for the dog, and then chuckle when poor ol' Muffin would come dashing in and look all around. He'd do wolf whistles and cavalry charges and all sorts of things.

    Walter's favorite food was bread and butter. Well, butter, more than bread - he'd stand on one foot with the bread clutched in the other and eat all the butter off the crust and then hand (foot?) the bread back to you for a refill.

    He couldn't fly becasue of a broken wing, so he walked all over the house, but he spent most of his time on top of the cage. My dad used to keep a supply of chicken bones in the fridge, and he'd always tell visiting children to keep away from Walter, then hand the bird a chicken bone, which he would snap in half. Never had to tell kids twice to keep their fingers to themselves!

  10. My baby chicks are now two months old and spending time outdoors. I noticed that while they scratch from day one, under normal circumstances they learn how to refine those skills from the hens. Since they imprinted on me early on, I've been leading them to the nicer greens and such. I stacked a couple boards and the following day, called the chicks and separated the boards - voila! Earwigs for breakfast. It's lots of fun to watch them.

  11. Hi, We lost 8 out of 14 chicks on our first attempt because we had them on woodchips. They ate the chips and died of digestive proplems, haven't lost any since we changed to sand....just a thought


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.