Monday, September 20, 2010

Adventures At the Home of Mr. Davenport...

Let's start by saying, Kyle has a "training day" planned for Bowen, Avery, & several other bird dogs (including our breeder's dogs) Sunday, the 26th. So, in preparation for them to come to our 10 acres for training, we needed to get some more quail. That took us to a town about 1hr south of us & to the home of a man we will call Mr. Davenport. Well, I was not aware that Mr. Davenport basically runs a live petting zoo. We pull into their "yard" which consists of horse pastures, & when I get out of the car, I hear a woman {or so I thought} yelling. Mr. Davenport walks out from behind the house & yells "hey," with cigarette in one hand and beer in the other. disclaimer: He truly is one of the nicest & most genuine men I've met in a while, but he is also quite a character. Now, continuing on, this woman that I thought was yelling was clearly not his wife, as she was found sitting on the back porch talking on the phone quietly. She smiled & waved and Mr. Davenport, Kyle, and I begin walking out to the quail pens. I hear something running behind me & I turn around to find the first odd animal of the day, their half-eyed dog. Let me explain...Poor dog had an infection in one eye (Adios right eye) & then something happened to the other eye that required stitching...(hello half-of-a-left-eye). Ok, so moving on from the dog, we oohh and ahh over how nice this man's 150ft flight pens are.

Below is a heck of a flight pen, similar to Mr. Davenport's (more description later in the post)..

Then, Kyle decides to ask what kind of other dogs this guy has & off to look at his English Pointers we go. I, again, hear footsteps & to my surprise, this time, I turn around to find a mean looking bird following me.
Sweet Mr. Davenport says, "Oh, don't worry, that's just Patsy the Peacock."
"Ohh ok but is it mean?" I ask.
"He'll get after you some." He replies.
"Great" I think to myself as I waddle faster than ever to catch up with Kyle & Mr. Davenport.

My friend Patsy..

On around to the front of the house, I finally discover who was yelling when we first got out of the car....a parrot. So, Mr. Davenport says, "go talk to her. She likes new people."
"OK" I respond.
I walk onto the porch to the parrot's cage and she instantly starts whistling at me. "Ohh pretty bird, pretty bird." The bird says to me. She, again, whistles at me as if to tell me I'm hot stuff.
"Yes, you're a pretty bird aren't you?" I say.
"ROXANNE," she replies. I quickly realized that's the bird's name. She likes herself, clearly. The bird then curiously turns her head upside down and says something...I'm not quite sure at first what she's saying..but then, loud as day, it comes again....."WHAT THE HELL??" Yes, these were their bird's proud first words, says Mr. Davenport.
Mr. Davenport also went on to tell us that in the winter, Roxanne lives in the house and watches TV all day. Know the commercial where the dog rubs its bottom across the living room carpet? Well, Roxanne knows that commerical too and can frequently be heard yelling, "TOBY, NOOO!" Wow....I wasn't aware that animals like this existed. fast forward. Kyle and Mr. Davenport round up 60 quail, put them in a cage for us to be able to take them home in, and we meet two more members of their brood (aside from the horses and cows that lived on Mr. Davenport's farm in abundance). Wiggles, the kitten & Spook, the donkey. Wiggles was a bottle fed kitten since 24hrs old and sucks on her outer toe (do cats have thumbs?). Yes, she layed in my lap and sucked her thumb...and Mrs. Davenport says this is commonplace. And Spook was born on Halloween and was quite upset that we were there in the first place and was dead set on making his presence known with quite a few hee-haws.

Anyway, we made it out alive & got the quail home safely. Saturday consisted of building a flight pen. What is a flight pen? It's a pen big enough to allow the quail to's usually wrapped in chicken wire or something similar & is their house. Simple enough, but considering that our pens in the past have been 1.5-3ft tall, having built an 8-10ft pen is a big improvement. So, Kyle spent ~12hrs building this thing & I spent ~6+ hours helping. BUT, it's done & the quail love it.

We built the pen onto the side of our barn...

The quail enjoying their new home...there's boards inside for the birds to sit on or hide under.

Bowen the first time he caught sight of our 60 new quail..on point! In the background to the left you can see one of our old pens that was maybe 3 ft tall.

Avery, who doesn't quite know what birds are all about yet..but she knows that she likes them!

Bowen & Avery as they watch dad install a new feeder.

Until next time...
Love, Jen

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