When I chose 2.1 from their big, aluminum brooder at Agway, many of them were a delicious blue colour. The Hatchery That Shall Not Be Named had assured Chicken Debbie that they would be blue in maturity, and I am a sucker for blue-coloured animals. I chose one likely little lady, fluffy and plump and almost entirely blue. I knew her peep fluff was just a tease, but I prayed she might keep some of it…

With Easter Eggers, you just don’t know what you’re getting, in terms of how the peep will look as a hen, because they are mutts, and not adhering to a breed standard. I’ve always had a basic idea of how my chicks would look fully grown; this was my first pot luck experience. Hindsight being 20/20, it mightn’t have been the best of ideas to name them based on their peeperness.

It was clear to me, you see, that this gorgeous blue chick would be a brunette bombshell:

Not her best side, I’ll grant you, but the best shot I have of her nascent blueness. (What’s with the green pasty gunk on her butt? That’s the “food” the peeps were given in the delivery box. It was all over them, and it’s all they pooped for three days.)

I named her Ava. There’s another brunette bombshell?!

It became apparent at three weeks that she was not going to stay blue. In fact, she began to show signs of becoming a brassy blond:

Week seven confirmed this diagnosis:

I couldn’t very well have a blond chicken named Ava, could I?! That just ain’t right.

I tossed around a few names, but it wasn’t easy to come up with two blond sex kitten names that went well together, and which suited the emerging temperaments of 2.1. And then…it came to me.

Mae. The brassy blond sex tiger to Marilyn’s vulnerable sex kitten. Two great ladies from adjacent eras. It was perfect.

Since integration, Mae has claimed a special place in my heart, as she demands cuddling every night. Truth be told, I think she’s looking for my protection more than my affection; Marilyn burrows under Mae’s chest for comfort; who does Mae have?

It matters not to me. When she hooks her beak into my collar and pulls me toward her, holding me against leaving, my cockles, they are warmed.

She seems the most likely of the two to leave me a blue/green egg first, and I haven’t been this excited to get a first egg since my first first egg.

What happened to all that blue, you might ask? It’s still there…on the tail feathers.


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