I’m doing something very naughty right now.
I’m looking for two more chucks to add to my existing flock of two.
Little has decided never to lay another egg again and Flight, easily led, and frankly a bit feather-brained, has come out in sympathy and decided much the same thing.
We have been void of eggs for some months. First they moulted, then Little had the trots, and now she is casting off feathers fasting than poo off a shovel. And, as I say, they have decided that they are now pretty pets and not prepared to push another egg from their little feathered bums.
Not to worry. I can happily live with that. However, I am using it as an excuse to pop out and bring in a couple more. You see, I love the things. I think they are beautiful AND they give me good reason to get off my backside and go into the garden with them while they have a session free-ranging and murdering small critters.
I’d never wrap up against the storms and cold and venture out if it wasn’t for them. Because of them my garden is tidy and shipshape beyond words because each day, when I am out there with them, I find something to do for an hour or two – even in the winter months.
And I hardly need to mention the pleasure of summertime chuck watching. Scratching around under the blackcurrant bushes, releasing the wonderful smell of sunshine-warmed fruits. Rolling upside down in the dry, dusty areas beneath the shrubs. Chasing Chea through the undergrowth. (I’m talking about the chucks, by the way, not me) I gave up chasing Chea through the undergrowth some time ago.
They have their pecking order, I guess, but they are such good friends, and as close as paint on a wall, that I really don’t know who the top chuck is. Little swings between thinking she is Flight’s mother and/or lover. She clucks and goes mental when she spies a treat and brings Flight running to scoff it. She’s a strange creature – but then aren’t we all in our own barmy ways? I fear she is changing gender and will start to crow any day now.
If I go ahead and introduce two more chucks I will have to keep them separate from Little and Flight for a while but that won’t be too difficult. They have a large summer-house and it’s already divided down the centre with a large pop hole in the middle, so it would just be a matter of temporarily netting the hole. That way they could see each other and issue threats and warnings but never be in the position to carry them out. And the radio could still be heard from both sides . . . I kid you not. Well, it gets boring for them when it’s raining and they don’t want to come out. A bit of Radio 2 and Ken Bruce in the morning cheers them up no end. Although, I do have to admit that only the chucks on the left hand side of the divide would see the clock. Those on the right wouldn’t have a clue what time it was!
I’ll think about it a tad more.