Tag Archives: lessons learned from the flock

Lesson 1261 – Update on Zelda (hen to rooster to hen)

Last fall, I wrote about Zelda, our alpha hen who had turned from being a hen, into being a rooster, and then back into a hen – all with different colorings (and yes we know it’s Zelda because of her metal leg identifier and her distinctive “bubble gum” comb.)

If you are around chicken owners for even a little bit of time eventually you will hear stories of hens “turning” into roosters. There are various reasons this can happen. If a flock is roosterless (as ours is) then the alpha hen can actually start to throw off more testosterone and will begin to display more male characteristics. Typically she’ll become more aggressive as she takes the role of protector and will stop laying eggs.

This can also happen if there is an injury of some kind to the reproductive organs, for example there can be a tumor that stops normal hormone production.

So you see, it’s not *that* uncommon for a hen to become a rooster. What is uncommon, however, is for that “rooster” to revert back to a hen and that’s what happened last fall.

Zelda turned from a golden speckled rooster into a white hen with a splash of her original grey on the bottom of her wing.

I contacted a vet who I use as an expert in some of my chicken articles to ask her about Zelda. She confirmed that hen to rooster had been seen, but that hen to rooster and then back to hen was not something that she had ever even heard about.

To be fair though, Zelda is about 7 years old. Most backyard chickens don’t make it to that ripe old age which might cut down on the chances of seeing this happen. The only way to truly find out what is going on would be to do an autopsy and, as Zelda is still alive and well, we’re going to hold off on that option.

In any event, we ended the conversation with the vet saying, she couldn’t wait to see what Zelda was going to do next.

Well, I have an update and here it is.

Zelda Spring 2015

Zelda Spring 2015

Zelda did nothing.

She remains a white female with her grey splash. It looks like Zelda’s grand transgender adventure is over and she is destined to live the rest of her days in our flock as a hen. (At least for now, anyway.)

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Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.


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Filed under Backyard Chickens, chicken care, Chicks, Holidays, Inspiration, Life Lessons, Personal, Quotable Chicks, The Family

Lesson 1199: A Nor’Beaster

8:00 a.m. Southern NH

8:00 a.m. Southern NH

Quick update. We are in the 18 – 25 inch zone with the worst of the snowfall yet to come. Continue reading

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Lesson 1198: A snow day to end all snow days

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Within a few hours, we, who are located on the east coast, are scheduled to be hit with the worst snow storm in history.

Usually, when there is a forecast for snow, the kids put a silver spoon under their pillows (and wear their pajamas backward) in supplication to the Gods of School Cancellings. This time, I don’t think they even need to bother. We’re expected to get WALLOPED with up to 3 feet of snow (depending on which news channel you follow.)

For us Granite staters, this is not as big a threat as it might be for those people living in a city. We’re kind of used to snow. We know that when the forecast predicts a serious winter storm, it’s time to stock up on candles, easily grillable items, and water. We move the snow shovels near the front door. We know to locate the stack of extra warm blankets and to make sure there is enough food in the house for the family and pets. We also dig out our favorite board and card games. The operative phrase is “hunker down.” We know what to do.

Not to be blasé, but we tend to have the attitude of “been there, done that.” Continue reading

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Lesson 1027: New England in the Fall

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It’s certainly that time of year again – Fall in New England. Not only do the mornings require sweaters (over long sleeved shirts), but the blankets have all been taken from storage, shaken out, and piled high on the beds (in one case, so high that it’s difficult to turn over under the covers at night – that’s the way she likes it, as long as her foot can still find “the cold spot.) Even TV watching and book reading is done under evening throws with a mug of hot cider keeping fingers warm enough to hit tiny remote buttons or turn thin, dry book pages.

Slippers not used since last Spring are rediscovered waaaaay back under the beds, and the protest smell of burnt dust from the heat that reluctantly kicked on greets us in the mornings.

We all cautiously step around the remnants of summer not quite put away – the last of gardening supplies that need to go into the shed, the pool toys, lying forlornly in a corner.

The flock notices the changes and they seem a bit confused – where is the sun’s warmth. What’s up with the leaves on the ground? But they quickly adjust – the sun will be back in the afternoon and under the leaves you can often find the juiciest of bugs.

It’s not good or bad, it’s just another transition leading the way onward in the direction where we are all supposed to be going.

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Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

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Lesson 1026: The Marzipan Realistic Mammo-graham recipe

 

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For those who may be visiting Lessons Learned from the Flock because of this Mammo-grahams picture that is all over the place (October is Breast Cancer Awareness month), you’ve reached the right place. I am a writer/journalist/blogger located in New Hampshire and I made those cookies for a local recipe swap/pot luck dinner.

Welcome. Continue reading

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Lesson 1051 – Amazing Lego Mama Hen – GoT

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“No Game of Thrones blog post here, they’re all in that direction,” said Amazing Lego Mama Hen.

 

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Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.


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Lesson 1049 – Amazing Lego Mama Hen – Daddy

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“Oh hey, Daddy’s home,” said the Amazing Lego Mama Hen to her flock.

 

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Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.


Leave a comment

Filed under Backyard Chickens, chicken care, Chicks, Holidays, Inspiration, Life Lessons, Personal, Quotable Chicks, The Family