Feisty Mamas

We now have two Dark Cornish hens brooding chicks and one sitting on a clutch of eggs.  It’s odd that we’ve only had three hens go broody this year and all three have been Dark Cornish.

Mama #1 with her chicks

Mama #1 with her chicks

Taking the babies for a stroll.

Mama #2 taking the babies for a stroll.

The other day I was tending to the coop and the two brooding mamas bumped into one another. They’re gentle birds and normally they get along fine, but something about the encounter must have triggered their defensive instincts. A dustup ensued.


It was over quickly and I wasn’t able to get any good pictures of it.  Partly because of all the steps necessary to take a picture with a phone/camera (press button to activate phone, “slide to unlock,” “enter passcode,” tap camera icon, aim and start photographing–most chicken fights don’t last long enough for all that) and partly because Elvis trotted over to join in, blocking my view.


Elvis broke it up. He allows no fighting, unless he's in the fight.

Elvis broke it up. He allows no fighting, unless he’s in the fight.


9 comments on “Feisty Mamas

  1. Leigh says:

    Roosters can be a hoot! Interesting that you say you’ve had only three hens go broody this year. This is the first year we’ve had more than one go broody! I love the chick photos. There’s nothing like chicks running around to keep the place looking productive. 🙂


    • Bill says:

      It’s great having chicks around. We’re looking forward to more soon!
      I don’t recall these hens having gone broody before, and those who regularly do haven’t. The Cornish have done a good job so far.


  2. shoreacres says:

    It’s fascinating to watch daily life among other species. When I went blackberry picking last night, the chickens already were in their little houses. I assumed it was an early bedtime, but just now it occurs to me they probably were put up for their own safety from the people coming to pick at the farm.

    What surprises me about your Dark Cornish hens is their size. I’ve always associated Cornish hens with those little six-bite chickens you get at fancy dinners. Now that I’ve read up on the Rock Cornish hen, I see they’re a relatively recent breed (mid-50’s) and clearly became a food fad during my childhood, along with green bean casserole with mushroom soup and canned fried onions.


    • Bill says:

      These girls are stocky. Definitely would be a good dual purpose breed.

      Chickens go into their coops at night on their own. We have two flocks. One goes to bed about 6 o’clock but the others stay out until it’s nearly totally dark. It’s a quarter to 9 now and I still have to go out and lock them up once they finally decide to turn in. Chickens.


  3. I found Elvis stepping in to stop the fight quite interesting. I wonder about his motivation. –Curt


    • Bill says:

      I think he just wanted to make the point that there is to be no fighting unless he’s in it.


      • I read an interesting article in Scientific American a few months ago, Bill, on how intelligent chickens actually are. I was surprised. It appears the pecking order begins and ends with your rooster. –Curt


  4. Sophie says:

    Every time I see pictures of your beautiful hens, it makes me want to look after some myself.


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