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Chicken sex!


Not my picture. I stole it from this thread at backyardchickens.com. I don’t have a picture of one of my chooks doing this, but it’s a classic example of a hen’s Hey Sailor! position — the crouch or squat.

Squat down, stick your elbows out and wait for a big surprise. They present like this to the rooster, but they will happily present like this to people, too. Mapp is the most enthusiastic squatter in my flock, though she always has a look on her face like, “well, go on — let’s get this over with!”

It’s the best when someone says, “aw, that’s so cute — your chicken came right up to me and wanted petting!” And I’m, like, “nnnnno that’s not what she wanted.” It’s at that exact moment they remember when they stroked the bird, she flipped her tail to one side, almost like she was moving it out of the way or something.


This week in my Chickenology course — chicken sex! Or, if you prefer, “Reproduction, courtship, mating and nesting.” But, you know, chicken sex.

Today I learned that the alpha hen mates less often than her subordinates. That’s because the crouch is a submissive posture, and alpha don’t bow to no chicken.

Anyway, not really going anywhere with this, I just thought it was interesting. I also note my lowest hen in the pecking order never crouches. That would make sense, from an evolutionary standpoint. You wouldn’t want chicks from the pariah hen (yes, that there’s the actual chicken science lingo for bottom girl. Poor Vita). But you would think evolution would especially favor having more chicks from the alpha lady.

p.s. Oh, did you see this? 87-year-old double bassist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra collapses and dies in the middle of There’s No Business Like Show Business. Ba-dum-tssss.


Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: May 17, 2016, 9:19 pm

I’m getting a lot of good material for my next book, Ms Weasel. I’ll credit you.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: May 17, 2016, 9:22 pm

Chickens in spaaaaaaace?

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 17, 2016, 9:47 pm

I’m halfway through your last one, Skandia. Like it a lot but can’t seem to find the time to finish.

How can somebody with a part-time job be so chronically short of time?

Comment from dissent555
Time: May 17, 2016, 10:25 pm

Around these parts we’re rootin’ for the local coyotes to help manage the otherwise protected Canada geese population.

Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: May 17, 2016, 10:44 pm

Re book. Thanks for the feedback.

I was going to comment on another blog about books and was going to say that sometimes a word or sentence puts me out of the story and I don’t care to finish it. Then I was afraid to post the comment.

I sent you Safari, I think. That’s the one I like best.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 17, 2016, 10:59 pm

Dissent555, the most beautiful fur coat I ever saw…I ran to catch up with the woman and ask what it was. It was coyote. It was thick and lush and…wow.

Skandia, it was Rich Man’s Adventure. The lion-clone-ladies kind of freak me out. Are they supposed to?

Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: May 17, 2016, 11:17 pm

Skandia, it was Rich Man’s Adventure. The lion-clone-ladies kind of freak me out. Are they supposed to?

Well, I set up the rules for their behavior and then just let them be who they are. Rich Man’s Adventure has a second part that is more like urban gang wars. They are a little blood thirsty. but they have morals. Live and let live, or we kill you.

Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: May 17, 2016, 11:20 pm

I never stopped to think the clones might be a little to murderous for sane people. It just seemed logical to me.

Comment from dissent555
Time: May 18, 2016, 12:11 am

Yeah I have seen a couple of luxuriantly coated coyotes in recent months. Seemed well fed.

Comment from Deborah HH
Time: May 18, 2016, 12:48 am

My favorite “fur” is actually mouton. I wish it would come back in style. It’s heavy, dense, and insanely warm.

Comment from Bob B
Time: May 18, 2016, 4:46 am

Off topic. I’ve been shopping for a light duty cargo van, and there seem to be a lot of new ones lately with “Euro Styling”. Several manufacturers are having them assembled in Turkey, with rear seats installed to avoid the “Chicken TAX”. The rear seats magically transform the cargo vans into passenger vans, which are exempt from the Chicken Tax. After the passenger vans clear customs, the seats are removed, and the new cargo vans are delivered to the dealers. The US government knows what the truck companies are doing, and lets them get away with this.
Oh, you can google “truck chicken tax” yourselves.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 18, 2016, 7:53 am

Skandia: oh, the murderousness doesn’t bother me. I liked that part, and the tactical nature of the battles. I think it was the ‘clone’ part that was a bit spooky; the cultish nature of the families.

Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: May 18, 2016, 12:46 pm

I think it was the ‘clone’ part that was a bit spooky; the cultish nature of the families.

Oh. Good. I was worried. The cloning part is supposed to be spooky witchcraft and such. That, and the clans mimic the behavior of a lion clan. Alpha leader has absolute authority. Challenging the leader results in violence. Rebels driven out of the clan, that kinda thing.

Comment from Wolfus Aurelius
Time: May 18, 2016, 1:42 pm

Skandia, this sounds fascinating; I write fantasy myself. Is your stuff fantasy, or SF, or some kind of blend?

Comment from Deborah HH
Time: May 18, 2016, 2:13 pm

P.S. I can’t believe you waited all this time to tell us about chicken sex.

Comment from MikeW
Time: May 18, 2016, 2:29 pm

Permit me to interrupt with a chicken question for the Stoaty Henologist In Training, uh, mebbe we’ll skip the acronym on that one :).
What would happen if you segregated ole’ Vita together with a half dozen other bottom-of-the-order sisters and let them sort things out? Would one of them convert to Alpha-hood? Would that retraining hold after transfer back to her original housemates?
Not that you’d be doing this, but I’m sure it’s been done and thought you have access to such interesting trivia.
BTW, how long will your course run?

Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: May 18, 2016, 4:26 pm

Wolfus Aurelius.

I don’t see it as fantasy. Everything is based on real, or nearly real science. Magic mushrooms that are hallucinogenic, other plants that are fertility drugs, that lead to charges of witchcraft. Extended slightly to create a bond between human and apex predator. I know it’s a stretch, but that is allowed in SciFi. The real story is about a young woman who flees into the wilderness and survives. It is her experience that shapes the character of the ‘lion-clone-ladies’ as Ms Weasel calls them.

Everything is taken from news headlines, Women in combat, single mothers with multiple children (all clones). It is the heroine who has the clones because of near starvation during her ordeal. Her friends who are recruited to be a secret society keeping their frontier communities safe from the wolves have twins and triplets because of the fertility drug. I have cousins who were identical twins, and I have a lot of fun describing how the twins/clones behave.

I explore all the reasons why conflicts between groups develop.

I’m really focused on animal behavior, and human behavior. Which is why Ms Weasel’s chickenology is so fascinating. You can see a lot of animal behavior in humans, and a lot of animal behavior can be explained in human terms, defense of territory for example. And I think in terms of military tactics for small ground units.

I worry about swamping the blog with my spew. Are you on Goodreads?

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 18, 2016, 9:01 pm

Help yourself, Skandia. You can talk about it all you like, or link to your stuff elsewhere. Consider it an apology for not finishing your latest yet.

MikeW: I started to type out an answer to your question, but what the hell. Lemme get a whole post out of it.

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