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By naturegrrl · Jan 11, 2012 ·
  1. naturegrrl
    The Continuing (Mis)adventures of a Dirt-worshipping Tree-hugger and Her Pet Chickens.

    The Girls:

    Although I study birds for a living, my status as a Chicken Lady came in a rather roundabout way. A mild interest in chickens as pets had been piqued by an odd documentary called The Natural History of the Chicken, and by the plethora of articles cropping up here and there, touting the joys of backyard chickens. Still, I am by nature a cat person, and had hoped to get a kitten when I moved to my new house. The landlady, however, is allergic to furbearing animals, and stipulated that if I wanted a cat, it would have to be exclusively an outdoor cat. As an ornithologist and ecologist, I am particularly sensitive to the damage that outdoor cats do to bird populations, so I revisited my choice of companion animal, and ended up with the delightful, often hilarious, and sometimes anxiety-provoking bundles of fluffy joy that are my chooks.
    My chooks were hatched on ~ 13 May 2009, from Murray McMurray stock. Kitty and Fish are LF Buff Brahmas, and Princess is a Buckeye. I chose the brahmas because of their reputation as sweet-tempered, friendly birds with fair egg-laying capacity; I chose Princess because she was the only Buckeye in a batch of over 150 “mixed heirloom” chicks sent to the lady I bought the girls from, and something about her spunky hardiness appealed to me.
    Kitty lives up to her name by napping frequently, remaining aloof, and steadfastly Doing Her Own Thing unless the other girls find something of extreme interest. She is mellow, smart and friendly, but doesn’t take any BS, even from Fish, who is nominally dominant. Fish was named by a boyfriend who was later fired due to bad behavior. She is the dominant hen, but in a relatively laid-back way, and she is the designated lap-chicken of the trio. Princess is just that – a princess! She eats, drinks, and walks with extreme delicacy and fastidiousness, and loudly announces her displeasure at any little thing that dares ruffle her feathers. She is also extremely inquisitive, and has the sharpest mind of the three.


    I am a bellydancing buddhist biologist from Central Coastal California; vegan, straight-edge, extra-strength crazy, trying my best to live lightly and do no harm.

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