"Boring's" Story

Boring hatched out in the spring of 1979, back when I was renting a sort of rural slum--but it had a big chicken coop! Her mother was a Blue Andalusian and her father wasn't.

I sold her when she was 6 months old, because she was so unprepossessing, but she was returned a month later because of predator problems at her new home. I didn't really want her back, so she ended up living outside the fenced yard, roosting on the guest cottage with a pet rooster.

My red-neck neighbor, who lived in a cottage also rented by my landlord and a good 30 feet from my house, had a dog (Zeb) he kept on one of those long overhead runs. All Zeb did was bark all day long and when he got loose he'd try to kill my chickens. One spring day Boring showed up with a brood of chicks she had hatched out in the bushes somewhere. She made the mistake of walking across the lawn towards that cottage and the dog saw the little family and charged. Boring flew at him. Pecking him in the face and beating him with her wings, she drove him all the way to the far end of his chain. Never again did he even look cross-eyed at those chicks!

The following year, Boring made her nest in a wooden box in a shed off the side of the guest cottage. She was happily laying her eggs there every day. One morning I noticed that my landlord's barn cat had decided to have her litter in that box. Later that day I heard the most horrible noises outside and when I ran out I got to watch the tail end of the fight as Boring ousted that cat from the box and proceeded to climb in among the pile of kittens and lay that day's egg. [The cat abandoned the litter a couple days later and I ended up bottle raising one of them.]

Boring met a sad end a couple of years later. She insisted on spending part of her day on the red-neck neighbor's porch and leaving her calling card. He came home drunk one day and shot her.

[Photo of a mixed-breed hen]


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