Frank is the newest addition to our ever growing farm family. He is a rooster. Let me make this perfectly clear to you, I did not want a rooster. Roosters are aggressive, smelly, noisy and they fertilize eggs. I was happy with my girls and they seemed happy with me. Life was good, why rock the boat?
Until one day this past weekend, I was outside minding my own business when my son hands me his phone. He tells me it is his friends mother and she wants to talk to me. I thought this can not be good, somethings up. Sure enough, Frank was up. She has chickens and she has a rooster named Bob. Well last week Bob went missing. They couldn’t find him anywhere and because she free ranges her flock she thought he had either wandered off or fallen victim to an attack. So in comes Frank, who was named Timmy at the time, but I changed his name to Frank after my dad. Anyway, she found Timmy in the bargin news (first red flag) and brought him home to take Bobs place as keeper of the hens. No sooner do they get Timmy settled in then who do they find? Yep, Bob. Poor Bob had been trapped under a bale of hay in the horse barn for 4 days!! No food, or water and he survived!! Roosters are tough folks. They are survivors!! So now she has two roosters and that is not a good thing to have. They fight, and fight they did. Bob was not gonna have Timmy making the moves on his girls. Timmy has to go. To make matters worse, or to make me feel so bad I had absolutley no choice but to take in this rooster, Timmy was abused by his original owner and headed for the soup pot. He had been living in a cage all his life, up to his knees in chicken poop, (second red flag) never getting to feel the grass under his feet, or to feel the sun on his face. My heart was broken. I had to save him. That is how Timmy came to be my Frank.
Frank is one year old and he is a Light Brahma rooster with mostly white coloring except for his black neck and tail feathers. From what I have read The Brahma is a large stately bird that is exceptionally gentle, easy to handle and winter hardy. One of the most distinguishing characteristic of a Brahma is their feathered feet. They are beautiful, absolutely one of the most handsome roosters I’ve ever seen.
Except Frank. He is scrawny, his tail feathers are sparse and he is more like a dingy yellow brown than a white. My first order of business was to clean this guy up. He smelled..bad. I read that you can give chickens a bath and they don’t seem to mind, but roosters? Well I was going to find out. I filled a large bucket with soapy warm water and slowly submerged Frank. No squawking, no fighting he just sat there. I think he actually enjoyed his bath, it had to feel good to get all that crud off. I washed him gently with my grandkids baby shampoo so it wouldn’t hurt his eyes… no more tears ya know, and I let him soak for a good long while.
When I took him out I wrapped him in a soft fluffy towel and then I carried him inside the house, past my hubs who was standing there shaking his head in disbelief. What? I was just gonna give him a little blow dry so he wouldn’t catch a chill running around with those wet feathers. Frank loved his blow dry. He was good in the tub and he was great while I dried all his feathers. I didn’t get the results I had been hoping for. He was still rather dingy yellow brown white, and he still had an oder to him. I thought about spraying him with my hubs cologne but hubs wouldn’t let me. Party pooper.
After Franks bath I let him run loose in the back yard, which is fenced in so I wasn’t worried he would run away. He ran all around and went exploring while I went inside and got dinner ready. After dinner it started to get dark so it was time to put Frank back into his little cage in the coop where he could spend the night and he and the girls could get accostumed to each other. Except Frank had other ideas. I could not catch him. I chased this rooster all over my back yard. I tried bribing him with treats. He ate all the treats and ran as fast as he could every time I reached for him. I could feel myself starting to panic. I didn’t want him to spend the night, in a strange place, all alone in the dark, in this big back yard, by himself, all alone, in the dark!! Anything could jump the fence and eat him! Or he could jump the fence and run away or get lost in the woods, in the dark, all by himself, all alone!! My hubs came out to help me. If anyone could catch this rooster it would be my hubs because he can do anything and he wouldn’t want to have to listen to me carry on all night about how poor Frank was all alone, lost somewhere, in the dark, by himself, shivering cold and scared. After about a good one hour chase we were finally able to wear this rooster down. With my hubs taking the rear and me taking the front we were able to corner Frank. I was never so relieved to be holding a rooster in my life. Now I could sleep. Tomorrow would be another day and I would begin the job of fattening up Frank and his road to recovery.
I have to share this one story about Frank with you. I know you are all going to think I’m crazy, that I have absolutely lost it and that I’m heading for my own little sort of funny farm. I would agree with you but I had witnesses. My son was with me and a good friend of ours had stopped by for a visit and we were standing around watching Frank check out his new digs. All of a sudden a phone rang. It wasn’t mine because mine was in my pocketbook in the car where I had left it. It wasn’t my sons, his ringer was shut off and it wasn’t our friends. We all just kinda stood there for a minute not knowing where this ringing phone was coming from. It was coming from the direction of Frank. Frank… was… ringing. The three of us couldn’t believe what we had just heard. We searched inside the coop around Frank because we are all fairly smart people and we know that roosters can’t ring. No phone. We searched around the outside of the coop thinking maybe somebody had lost their phone? No phone. Next we started blaming each other, thinking each of us were playing a joke and ringing their phone to make it sound like it was Frank. Nope. My son ran up to the barn and grabbed us each a beer to further help us solve this mystery. While we stood around contemplating this ringing rooster drinking our beer, he did it again. Plain as day that ring was coming from Frank. We were standing right next to him! We all heard it! Coming FROM him!! Not next to him, not under him, not in my pocketbook in my car, not in my friends hand or my sons hand because they each took their phones out to prove it wasn’t them. I swear on the holy bible, that ringing phone was coming from Frank the rooster. I thought maybe he swallowed a phone? Or that he might have had some type of phone chip implanted in him for some reason or another? My dog and my cat have chips in them in case they ever go missing I can find them but they don’t ring. And Frank was abused remember? I don’t think his original owner would implant him with a chip in case he got lost, the guy was just going to eat him! So the mystery remains. We never heard Frank ring again. But he did, twice, and I have witnesses. Unbelievable right? True story people.
Frank is the sweetest, gentlest, most loving roo. I kept him separated from the girls for all of 3 days. I probably could have let him loose with them from day one but I just wasn’t sure. He is so much fun to watch and he is a real gentleman, always letting the ladies go first when I bring them their treats. His favorite pastime is looking at himself in the mirror. He stands in front of it, tall and proud, puffing out his scrawny feathers, flapping his wings and singing his song. He is such a character. He is a wonderful addition to The Hippie Chick-Inn and he is a keeper. I think the girls are happy with him around too. I keep finding Tito (my grandson named her) close by his side. She is such a little flirt (I am trying to keep this g rated so I’m putting it nicely). When he was still alone in his cage inside the coop she would stand right next to his cage telling him lies about the other ladies and inviting him to dinner.
When he was allowed to mingle in with the girls she would back him into the corner of the coop and stick her little fluffy butt up in the air, the little… eh hem.. flirt that she is. And when they roost at night guess who is tucked in right by his side. I think I will be getting fertilized eggs in no time now.
I will continue to do my best to fatten Frank up and give him a better life then the one he came from. Having a rooster around is a learning experience, you learn to sleep with your windows closed unless you want to be woken up at 5 in the morning!! I must tell you though that the song he sings is a meaningful one. It fills me with a sense of peace, a feeling of home. I will add his song to my list of little things.