Sunday, January 19, 2014

New residents

Last Sunday, we got some new members into our household . . .

It has been sometime since our Community Health department had been exploring new options in rural livelihoods. We had also made some visits to the Veterinary Department of the Agriculture University in Ranchi. 

We got some amount of success on our inquiries regarding pigs, sheep and chicken.

However, I was more interested in getting few turkeys for the campus. Although the concerned department had few turkeys, they did not have any poults (baby turkey) to sell. 

But, I had a surprise last week. As we drove back from Ranchi after a weekend break, I had to stop to buy some vegetables from one of the local markets. 

As I explored the village shanty, I was attracted by a crowd of villagers around one man with about 30 chicken who was quite vociferous. 

'40 kilogram chicken for sale . . . 40 kilogram chicken for sale . . . ' 

I was quite interested. I asked him what the name of this 40 kilogram chicken was. He showed me a picture. And it was the snap of a turkey . . . 

I was not sure . . . I asked the guy about the cost . . .  3 poults for 100 INR. 

A one day old chick of chicken cost nothing less than 30 INR. I thought of trying my bargaining skills. I asked him for 5 poults for 100 INR. He agreed for 4 for 100 INR. 

Thus, I came back to the jeep with the 4 poults. There was some amount of opposition from my sweet better half. However, after some pleading we were on our way back home. 

Snaps of the quartet. 

One of the previous doctors at NJH, Dr. Colin Binks, had kept rabbits in cages. And these cages were in the maintenance dump. 

We had them readied up in no time and the poults have a very comfortable home. 

Now, the advantages of having these birds . . .

1. All the crumbs from the dining table goes into the bird feed. They are voracious eaters. 

2. There is new entertainment for the kids.

The downside . . . I'm not sure if they are really turkey poults . . . They could be chicks of normal fowl. The fly by night salesman could have been selling normal chicks with their heads shaven off . . . 

But, then, I do not lose anything . . . they had cost me only 100 INR . . .

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