Bringing our new hens home

On the day that we finished the coop, we drove to South Carolina to visit our friend Liz and get the chickens. She had a bunch of hens that she was looking to re-home, but I especially wanted her two Buff Orpingtons, since they were supposed to be especially friendly, and still decent egg layers. I also go one Easter Egger (these lay pale blue or green eggs), and one Barred Rock. The Barred Rock had somehow escaped from Liz’s run that day, and was running around her back yard. David’s first chicken experience was helping Liz’s son catch the Barred Rock.

I named the first Orpington Zahavah, which comes from the Hebrew word for gold. As you can see, David is not quite sure what to make of her yet.

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Here is the second Orpington. I named her Tzipporah… I think it’s a very pretty name, but it amused me to name her that because it is so sneakily uncreative – Tzipporah is the Hebrew word for “bird.” Although she and Zahavah look very similar, Tzipporah is a little fatter, with lighter-colored feathers. She also has a little chip in her beak which we don’t know how she got.

I told David and Ann that chickens were originally bred from jungle fowl, so David wanted to name her Jane instead of Tzipporah… as in Tarzan and Jane. I told him that if we ever get a “Tarzan,” that’s when he can name one Jane.

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This is the Barred Rock. David called her Sally Shakespeare, and Ann thought she should be Pepper, so mostly she gets called whatever we feel like at the moment.

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And here is our Easter Egger, who David named Sous-marin, which is French for submarine. Don’t ask me why he picked that, because I have no idea! Mostly she gets called Sue.

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Shakespeare and Zahavah are by far the friendliest of our girls, and Shakespeare is always the boldest. These two are usually happy to be petted as long as they are getting treats in exchange. At first, Sue was the most skittish around people, and would try to always be at least 10 feet away from me. She was a little sulky at first too, staying in the coop on her perch most of the day rather than being outside in the run with the others. But now, all of them will eat out of my hand, and everyone except Tzipporah will sit on my lap when food is involved. They all seem well-adjusted and happy.

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