Saturday, April 16, 2011

RIP Runt

Yesterday,we had to "take care"of our dear buddy,Runt The Rooster. Runt was a surprise to begin with. Last Spring,we had ordered chickens (no roosters) but he slipped past the sorting and wound up with us. That was no problem. We enjoy the sound of roosters. Runt had an especially neat crow-it always had an upward inflection at the end,like he was asking a question.
A couple of weeks ago,Runt started getting a wee bit territorial. When Rick or Brother B went into the pen,he would challenge them. It started harmless enough,with Runt puffing out a bit and flapping his wings. Then he started pecking at their boots. Then he started jumping in the air and using his feet. He did this to me for the first time last week. I was coming out of the coop,and he was in front of the door to the pen with some of the girls. The girls took off,but Runt stood there,looking at me. I tried to just walk past him to open the door to get leave,but he squawked at me and flapped his wings with indignation. I yelled,"Move, Runt!" That didn't work,so I swung the basket of eggs in his direction,and he moved.
Yesterday, the menfolk cleaned out the coop,and I went outside to see. Rick was raking the straw off the strawberry bed,and Brother B followed me into the coop. All the chickens,as well as Runt,were outside in the pen. I was standing there,in the coop,looking at how nice the nesting boxes looked and checking for eggs. Brother B was in the doorway chatting with me,when all of a sudden,I felt something attack me from behind.
Runt had come in the chicken door,flew up,and starting attacking the back of my right thigh with his talons. It caught me by surprise,and faster than I realized what was happening,Brother B was kicking at Runt to get him off me. " Are you alright?" he asked,as we got of the coop and out of the pen. "Yes," I replied,rubbing my leg. I wasn't bleeding,but it hurt. " He's dead," Brother B declared. "It's one thing to attack Rick or I,but it's another when he is doing it to you from behind."
We went to the strawberry bed and told Rick what happened.He was mad. "He attacked you from behind?!" He said the same thing it was,time to take care of  Runt. "He could've hurt you..what if Brother B wasn't there and you were by yourself? Or what if Zach was in there and he went after his face?"
Runt's fate was sealed,and it was over in less than a minute.
I feel bad,because up until this point Runt was really cool. He never had an issue with any of us. However,it was time for him to go. Right now,he is in the fridge,waiting for the crock pot. We will miss you,Runt.


  1. You made the right decision, we had to do that to a rooster once. It's a territorial thing, plus spring is in the air there and he'd have been protecting the girls. Those spikes on thier legs hurt like hell, I bled for ages when the rooster attacked me. Ya can't have animals around you like that, glad you're ok ♥

  2. Thanks,Sue. Sorry you wound up getting cut by your old rooster. I was lucky. I thought I would at least wind up with a bruise,but nothing came of it.It did hurt for a bit,though.