Franny: The Defender

Backyard chickens are making a come-back. I saw this poster on Facebook a few days ago.

As people decide on what kind of pet to have, chickens have been thrown into consideration. So much so that they even sell chicken diapers for those chickens you just have to have in your studio apartment in the big city (ordinance permitting) Don’t believe me? Check out Amazon

There’s nothing like standing on the front porch, sipping a cup of coffee, and watching the flock of chickens doing their silly walk across the yard. Or in some cases, since my girls are free range, the squawk of alarm/ “where the hell are you”.

Once I hear that call, I drop what I’m doing, bundle my son and rush out the door to see what the fuss is about. Sometimes the situation is that one of the girls (usually Roxy or Marge) got separated from the rest of the flock. In most cases, the other girls are concealed 10 feet away, and heaven forbid they make a single peep so the prodigal can return.

Other times, it may be that there is a predator- like the day the hawk was actually inside the pine tree that the girls roost in. The girls, however, were smart and stayed outside the tree using it as a block between them and the hawk.

Each chicken has their own personality, and Franny is definitely the leader and defender of the group. I have seen her “rank on the chicken totem pole” a few times when my pit bull, Fendi, gets in her territory.  Fendi is, of course, oblivious to a little chicken, but it is hilarious to see Franny marching up behind Fendi as if she was going to chase the dog away.

(This is a picture of a Franny/Fendi faceoff)

In any case, Franny is always the one to start moving around the yard, and the rest of the flock follow her. She is the one who is first out of the coop, but always the last into the coop if she thinks I’m “trapping” them too early.

She is the defender, and some day soon she may end up pecking Fendi. We will just wait to see how Fendi takes it.


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