Pet of the Day

February 24, 2004

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Jocelyn, the Pet of the Day
Name: Jocelyn
Age: Six months old
Gender: Female
Kind: Chicken
Home: Carlock, Illinois, USA
   Jocelyn is a very special little hen. Actually, she's a pullet until she lays her first egg. I knew she was special from the moment she hatched. I helped her out of the egg, and an hour later I put Mara, the mommy hen, on the floor to eat and watched the babies while she was down. Jocelyn kept peeping contentedly and trying to crawl up to me. When she got older she would sit in my hand and just watch me. I had a very special friend stop by my farm to see the chickens and she really liked this baby chicken. She held her and petted her real gingerly. I named her Jocelyn after that friend. Jocelyn is really sweet, loves to talk and eat 'people food', and loves to tag along with me in the shop. In the picture she is sitting in her favorite spot - atop the drill press. She just watches. Sometimes she startles easily though, so you have to calm her down.

    I bring her in at night and wrap her in an old towel and she peaks out from under it and watches the TV. She likes Sci-Fi shows the best. When she has to go bathroom, she gets anxious and starts talking a lot. I take her outside and she goes. Yes, a house-trained chicken! And it came naturally too.

    Her lineage goes back almost 30 years on our farm. I have four other hens and two roosters with the same color patterns. I call them the "Melody Variety" because it all goes back to a very special hen named Melody - she was the first. Melody was Jocelyn's great-great-great-great grandmother. And actually, Jocelyn came to me by pure chance. Mara was just starting to sit on a clutch of eggs and that day one of my older hens happened to lay an egg. As she did not have any offspring, I placed the egg under Mara. Had I not been in the chicken coop when Cynthia laid that egg, I would not have known to set it. Someone was watching out for her from the beginning (maybe it was Melody). Jocelyn wants to just say "Hi" and wants you to notice all the gorgeous feathers she has. She has a 'hat,' chin and cheek feathers, shank (leg) feathers, and toe feathers. She is fluff literally from head to toe!!

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