|Our volunteer day rooster|
The first I realized he was there was one morning when I went out the back door and heard a rooster clucking his prettiest "I found a treat to eat" song. There he was in our backyard, clucking to about half a dozen of my hens who were in the chicken yard, on the other side of the chicken wire fence. They were extremely interested in what he'd found, but couldn't get out to get it.
The next morning, Mr. Rooster was in the pasture with the hens, just as happy as he could be. He's shown up every day since, not that he's been invited to stay (by the humans, that is), but the hens haven't discouraged him either. I'm not sure if our next door neighbors have noticed, but I'm sure their senior rooster doesn't mind getting rid of the competition.
Unfortunately for him (but fortunately for us?) he can't quite figure out how to get into the chicken yard.
|He's on one side of the chicken yard fence ...|
|the hens (who come and go as they please) are on the other.|
The chicken entrance into the yard is a bit tricky because I'm routing them into the front pasture. I did that when I replanted the back pasture and didn't want them gobbling down all the seed.
To go out to the pasture they have to go out the chicken gate ...
... then follow a small lane I made with a scrap of fence. I tied it off on the gate you see above, which is propped open for the time being. From there they head on out. The barn red building you see off in the distance in center of the photo is the goat shelter.
Getting back is a bit trickier, however, because the chickens have to remember where the entrance to that lane is. The bright ones do, but a few of the others initially bypass it and end up in the corner instead. They "remember" when they see another chicken make it successfully back into the yard.
|Hens in the compost with Mr. Roo|
watching from outside the chicken yard.
Our volunteer day roo is usually around at chore time, so Dan or I toss him scratch over the fence. But no one is going out of their way to show him the secret entrance to the chicken yard. So, during the day he happily escorts the hens around the pasture, but heads back home for the night. For the time being, it appears to be a pretty good arrangement.