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Forty Years with Birds and Dogs 

Good Mothers--Sharing Among the Birds

One spring, when I decided my granddaughter need to experience the miracle of baby chicks, I innocently went back to my Silkie breederfriend, who admitted he had two broody white Silkies he wouldn't mind getting rid of. They were the hens that serially adopted a mixed brood of turkey and chicken chicks and suffered two bear attacks after the Cerro Grande fire in 2000 C.E.

One of the broody white Silkies I adopted had been badly beaten up by other hens--the inevitable fate of the lowest hen on the pecking order. After the fire here in 2000, when a hungry bear demolished the wooden crate nest box and enjoyed a fluffy white chicken dinner, the second beat-up Silkie took over the remaining turkey (now called Little Bear by the granddaughters) and two chickens. No problem. She braved the second attack, when the bear failed to open the sturdy nest box hastily built by Uncle Don. The bear rolled it and broke down two fences in the birds' enclosure, but didn't flinch when this little old lady (me) came running down the hill with a flashlight. Thank goodness the dogs' doors were open. The bear quickly retreated when they came flying out. Mother Fluffy appeared the next morning clucking protectively over her 3 chicks. No problem sharing. Of course, chic

Is there a less in here for us somewhere. Probably not, but do take a look at the Christian Science Monitor article on sharing in the October 1, 2012 issue. There's a lot of good sense in sharing--a start on the path toward a more sane approach to using but not using up our resources--a theme in my novel THE WEBS OF VAROK, about to launch Dec. 4. The excerpts are online at ArchivesofVarok.com, with giveaway opportunities there and on my blog on Goodreads. Cheers, Cary

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