Jack is our third in a series of roos. The first was Rex, the chosen male of several Ameracauna roosters, and he was a kingly sort, regal in appearance and behavior. He ruled the roost and kept his girls in sight, pretending to lead them around as our chickens are free ranging. Although we have six acres they all tended to stay within 100 yards of their house and ours. Rex met his demise in the jaws of an Australian Shepherd who had a certain tenacity for chasing birds of a feather flocked together. The dog was shipped off to Nevada.
Our second dominant male was Pierre, a French Black Copper Maran, really quite splendid and although his crowing was a bit off key, his strutting around the yard was definitely in step. Imagine hearing the French National Anthem, the Marseillaise, and watching Pierre march to and fro around and among the trees. He had grown up from a baby with his girls so they were very close and seemed to give him great respect. The ladies really led him but let him believe otherwise. Sound familiar? Pierre and his ladies were sold before we departed for Mexico for a 3-month sojourn in the south for the winter months.
When we returned, we missed those fresh eggs from our own chickens and I found 5 Cuckoo Marans, one of whom we named Jack, the other 4 being his egg-laying companions and he seems to have two who are his favorites. To say that Jack is the alpha chicken is an understatement. He crows a lot, and not just in the early morning, but especially when someone comes around. He even flaps his wings, just to show off. But more than that, and what occasioned this blog is that today, I saw him chase one of the cats in a foot race not to be believed unless seen. I wish I had been quick enough to get a video. The cat escaped but it was close and I’m not sure what Jack would have done had he caught the cat, Cleo. Our dog gives Jack a wide berth as do the other two cats. They simply avoid him.
My point in all of this has to do with leadership. Jack leads but he is offensive in doing so. He has even threatened me a few times and if it continues, he may be sent to freezer camp. He and I know that I am bigger and stronger and would win in the end but I don’t want to defeat Jack. I want to respect him and in turn, I would like respect from him but I am not exactly sure how to train a rooster It may be too late to change his bad habits. Do you know leaders who are offensive either without knowing it or because that’s simply their style? For some, being in charge seems to mean exerting authority by being loud, arrogant and at times, downright annoying.