“If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.” Thomas Jefferson
Thursday, March 12, 2009
The Great Chicken Adventure
Well, let me tell you about the great chicken adventure. Saturday we went to the local poultry and rabbit auction. We were looking for some Rhode Island Reds and some duck or Turkey pairs along with some rabbits. We had not been to this particular auction before, but since it was closer to home we decided to give it a try. We got there and started checking out stock as they were unloaded. Whenever, I go to an auction I like to watch the stock being unloaded. This not only gives me a chance to really take a good look at what is there, but gives me a chance to talk to the owner. You can learn a lot about what quality of stock you might be getting by chewing the fat with the owner. One thing that many people should realize about livestock auctions is that there is quite a bit of stock that will show up that is diseased or old. Now, by having a chance to talk to the owner about anything and everything not necessarily even about the livestock you can get an idea about the quality of the stock that they have brought. I was excited to find several RIR hens and a couple of roosters. There were several other things there that I was interested in also, but this was the main thing I came for. The hens and roos were young, healthy and just starting to lay. Well, the auction was long. Apparently this little country auction will allow pretty much anything to be brought in for auction. So we had to wait while the donkeys were auctioned outside. Then we had to wait while 10 million (ok a little exaggeration) roosters were auctioned one by one. In the process we did get a large bred doe, missed out on a couple of rabbit bucks, and missed out on a mating pair of geese. Two hours later the chickens I had been waiting for came up and I won them. I was excited. My husband went to stand in line and pay and I went to put the children in the car and wait for the ticket so I could go pick up my stock in the back of the auction house. Little did I know that this was like no other auction I have ever been to. I have been to a lot of livestock auctions and I have never been able to pick up my livestock without showing that I had actually paid for them. I have always had to show someone my ticket before loading livestock. This auction was a free for all, no tickets checked and everybody loading livestock. By the time I got to the back of the building to load up my stock,it was pretty thinned out back there. I started looking through the cages and crates and found my rabbit, but no chickens in sight. I loaded my rabbit and returned the cage to the previous owner. Then I took another look around, absolutely no chickens. My chickens were gone. I found the auction owner who apparently had already been called to the back of the house by another customer missing chickens. Somebody had stolen my chickens and the cages that belonged to the seller. Not only had my chickens been stolen, but several other people's chickens also. Then one of the seller's stock that didn't sell came up missing. Several sellers were missing their cages. Now when you go to a poultry auction you are supposed to bring your own cages to transport them back home. The seller does not sell the cage that they bring them in. However, these folks took the cages too. It was the darndest thing I have ever seen and a sad testimony to the state of character in our country. Now, at this auction there was nothing but country folk. The one thing that you have always been able to count on with country folk is their honesty and integrity. When country folk can no longer be counted on for this then the world is in pitiful shape. Well, the auction owner gave us our money back and even gave us the little hens that he bought for himself. They were not RIRs. In fact when we got them home they are kinda pitiful. he did ask us to please come back this weekend and he would make sure to have some reds there and that things would be better run. I felt pretty bad for him because he was out a lot of money. He may have given me my money back but those chickens were gone and the seller still had to be paid. Not to mention all those sellers that lost stock and cages won't be back. It was a frustrating day. We are going to go back this weekend and give the man another chance, at least he was honest unlike others there. Honor goes a long way with me. So now you know the story behind the great chicken adventure. I thought I bought 6 beautiful hens and two roosters, I came home with an old blind dominecker, a golden comet hen, and a RIR rooster. What a day!