a rooster's business is finished a month later! To explain, let me, errr....explain. First off, I have two adorable gold-laced bantam cochin hens. I had them with a Mille Fleur D'Uccle roo for no real reason, just because of convenience. They were with him for maybe 2 weeks. They were all in quarantine together, you see. They came from the same pla...I'm rambling aren't I? Anywho, after 2 weeks I moved the hens into a coop/run with another purebred cochin, this one a rooster. I went ahead and incubated one of their eggs early on, knowing it would be crossed with the mille fleur because by this point I had rehomed him but was curious what we would get so far as a chick went. Enter "Zip" my adorable little mixed beast who was hatched on a whim. Adorable, but worthless to anyone but me, lol. So...I decided to wait a whole month to collect these hens' eggs for incubating because although Zip is adorable, he is a mongrel and I want some purebred cochins from my own flock to raise. I knew the cochin roo had been doing his job with both of these ladies, and any other hens that happened to not run fast enough, so after the designated month had passed I gathered a half dozen eggs over a few day's time and incubated. Purebred adorable babies right? Right? HeHe, right????!!! My 5 successfully hatched Mille Fleur D'Uccle X Gold Laced Cochin Bantams are "zipping" around the brooder as we speak. Just realized tonight that although their coloring has always seemed odd, they actually all have "tails". Last time I checked, my purebred cochins had much less, if any, tail. Sheesh. A MONTH LATER AND HE WAS STILL "AROUND" IF YOU GET MY DRIFT???!!! Alas, I suppose I should just be glad I have 5 adorable fluffy butts...they are 1 1/2 weeks old now. Look almost like baby EE's with eyeliner... I guess now I know...a hen can retain the "essence" (for lack of a better and suitable term) of their mate for at least a month. Lesson learned and all beware lest you find yourself inundated with the "Zips" of the world!