When it comes to finding food that will be yummy for his little flock, Tristan the rooster displays the most 19th century behaviour. Ladies first is the consistent rule. When his rustling in the dirt turns up something of culinary interest, he emits excited little squeals to tell Selma to come see what he's found.
Those squeals are outdone on the cuteness scale only by his burbling. Tristan burbles his way through his day. When I hear him burble while he's exploring the nesting box after I've laid down fresh and fluffy bedding, it makes me want to squeeze him until he pops.
If I could get my hands on him, that is. Tristan is much more wary of me than Selma (and Patty in her short life). Tristan keeps a respectful distance. Although I do notice that the lower I get down to the ground, the more inclined he is to come closer.
So whenever Tristan makes that excited "food!" sound, Selma comes running. And then he stands back, doffs his top hat, and waits for her to eat her share before he goes in to eats his own.
However, the chicken DNA code has some serious flaws, the same as for every other animal, and unsurprisingly in the animal kingdom, some of these surround the issue of sex. Or, more specifically, hen consent.
There isn't any. I've seen him, out in the yard, watching him from the decking. She'll be walking ahead of him up the hill and he just comes from behind, in both senses of the word ... well, actually, I don't really know if he gets that far, in terms of, you know, roosterly ejaculation, not being au fait with the length of chicken sex before its end and neither with what chicken orgasms might look like. But even though he's still quite a deal smaller than her, he sure has a red hot go.
I pondered all of this yesterday while I was doing some weeding. The chooks accompanied me for the whole hour and a half that I was outside. And while I contentedly pulled out the rampantly-growing wandering jew that is infecting the paws of my dog, I pondered, as is my wont, the cosmos, our place in it, beauty, God, and chicken sex. I realised that I don't even know what a rooster penis looks like. It doesn't even look like there's a space for one.
And indeed, I find out, in my morning's research for this post that indeed, roosters don't actually have a penis. There is no penetration with chicken sex. It's just connecting two bits and a transfer of sperm, and that's the deal, in about 20 seconds. From my voyeuristic vantage point, it doesn't seem very exciting to me. But then what the hell would I know about what's enjoyable or not enjoyable from out of the eyes of a chicken?
All I know is that when I see Tristan take advantage, and jump on, and grab the back of Selma's neck with his beak, and do his bizzo, that I would think it would be a much nicer deal for her if maybe he asked her first :)