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Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by speckledhen, Sep 29, 2015.
DH had to be gone to the dealership an hour south of us yesterday (he has a loaner car, has to go back to get the CRV today, thankfully, the work mostly covered by warranty). I was left with Deacon. When I checked on him, in spite of the heat lamp, he seemed so cold, so I just gathered him up and brought him inside and he slept in front of the wood stove for hours. I got him to eat a few bites of pancake but he was refusing water so I knew it was his last day. It was just after muttsfan asked about him that we went to check and found he was at the end.
I did cut open that "wound". It was still all scabbed up, but I cut across and partly around it. It was just fibrous like a cyst/tumor. At this point, I don't think it really had anything to do with what happened to him, that it was coincidental. The day that he and Atlas were battling at the fence under their adjoining coops about a month ago and Atlas tore the back of his comb and Deacon began limping, I think it's entirely possible that he jumped as he usually does, fighting with his feet, and hit his head on one of the 2x8 floor joists. He may have re-injured himself-if you recall, Isaac almost killed him inside the coop awhile back and I found him in the corner. He couldn't walk, his head shaking side to side as he would fall over to his left. We thought he was a goner then, but eventually recovered. Since then, there was at least one episode where he appeared glazed over and unsteady after one of their little tussles at the coop door when he lived in the other building. So, I think he suffered some permanent neurological damage when Isaac attacked him way back when. He may have hit himself just right to eventually lead to his demise. I'll never know for certain.
Deacon already had issues we could see and some that weren't so obvious, like his one spur and his dwarf gene, making it impossible to breed from him after he produced two dwarf sons. Who knows what other insufficiencies stemmed from just that? But, he was one of a kind and we loved that rooster. We've always had friendly, sweet males because we bred from the right stock, but he was beyond that, a true pet rooster. He will be very missed.
Now, Atlas is my only large fowl rooster and not one of his hens is laying, INCLUDING 37 week old Lizzie, or should I say "Lazy Lizzie"? She is HUGE, fully as big as the original Stukel hens. It's about time. Tessa, Ida's daughter, is almost 21 weeks old. I hope she doesn't wait that long to lay her first. I'm relying on ancient hens to give me eggs now. Lizzie has little excuse unless she's one of the true duds who never lays. The hen I have who waited the absolute longest is my EE, June. She laid her first jumbo egg at 40 weeks. Lizzie is challenging her for the title, it seems.
The last photos I took of Deacon.
This was October 23, so only a month ago he was on his feet and being a great flock rooster to his late father's hens.
So sorry. He was a gorgeous roo.
He was magnificent!
Thank you all. Now, all my sons of Isaac are gone as well as Isaac himself. Atlas is his grandson through the late Rex2, of course, but Atlas is much more BR than Delaware. Thankfully, he's inherited the intelligence and sweet nature of his grandpa and with his mother and aunts, produces some fine daughters. lockedhearts (Karen) has a son of Atlas she named Samson but I haven't seen a photo of him in awhile.
I'm faced with starting at square one with some new stock and am considering a little change. Since we've really enjoyed the Brahma hens, I may hatch out some Brahmas in the spring and keep a couple of males. Nothing is decided yet. DH loves the RIRs, but I think the New Hampshires may be a good choice as well. I adore my BRs but for some reason, I feel a need to add some spice to the mix. I may not even keep any breeds separate, either, except for Atlas's little BR group. Not sure if he'd accept another BR male in there, even if I could grow out one of his sons with him from a young age. DH is longing for the time when we just had a mixed flock, though he loves the BRs, too.
More pics from the insulation stage. I found this accordian type foam board in my father's basement and it's stretching my insulation buck, same thickness as the reflective stuff. Will seal drafts then see what we must do with the floor and ventilation up high. We poured a threshold for the roll-up door. And I got 2 bantam eggs for the first time in over SIX MONTHS! I just wormed them today, too, along with Atlas's group. Great timing.
Atlas and harem, including Lazy Lizzie (who was in a nest, btw, sat and actually did the egg cackle! alas, no egg, sigh) and Tessa.
Check out the last picture of Atlas checking the nest for eggs, LOL. He's impatient, too!
Lizzie, who has turned into quite a beauty at 37 weeks old.
....and everyone else with Atlas. Atlas is not "sunburned", as someone tried to convince me. He obviously meant "brassy", but that is red Georgia clay from his lavish dustbathing sessions. Naturally, he cannot groom behind his head so it stays stained/dirty with the clay.
He cracked me up in this last shot. Both Liz and Ida were cackling so loudly, they were freaking him out and he was yelling outside because they wouldn't shut up. When he came in for roost time, he started checking all the nests, LOL.
You have some really pretty birds, I'm jealous.
And stupid me put the pictures in the wrong thread. Good grief, I need to get my head on straight! I need these on Atlas's thread. Thanks, I love them. Ida was irritated by Lizzie and bloodied her comb when she refused to quit cackling today. I wish there had been an egg to go along with the noise.
Big bole Ida...tank of a girl!