Friday, May 10, 2013

Young pullets

The pullets I acquired at the Ventura Poultry Show are growing up! They are about two months old now, a Welsummer, an Ancona and a Blue Laced Red Wyandotte.

They quickly learned to peck corn from the hook where I hang it on the fence. They are getting along with the other girls well. They're a little intimidated by them, which is as it should be. But no pecking or aggression of any kind among them.
They all like to take their dirt baths together. That must be the best place.

I'm especially happy to have an Ancona. Anconas are a Mediterranean breed that shares the background of the Leghorns. In Europe, both breeds are known as Italian. They take their name from the Italian city from which they were imported to England in the mid-nineteenth century. Like the Leghorns, they are excellent egg layers with little broody instinct.

They have yellow skin and lay white eggs. Single and Rose Comb varieties with black and white mottled feathers are recognized by the APA and the ABA. Blue, Brown and Red Mottled varieties have been raised by fanciers.

Cecil Sheppard of Berea, Ohio, president of the International Ancona Club, wrote about the breed in a book, A Little Journey Among Anconas, in 1922. He pointed out that his strain of Anconas was mentioned in advertisements in 17 of the 67 ads published in the American Poultry Journal at that time.

This Ancona is living up to the breed reputation of being somewhat flighty, but she's not at all empty-headed. It's more as if she is following a different drummer. She's bold and curious, doesn't hesitate to venture out on her own. 

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