Durban - Gillitts residents Pauline and Keith Young got the surprise of their lives when eggs bought from a supermarket were accidentally hatched alongside those laid by their Koekoek chickens, resulting in punk-looking chickens.
Although biologically it is not possible that there was any cross-fertilisation between the two batches of eggs, the Youngs are wondering what could have happened.
The Youngs, who breed Koekoek fowls on their farm Tokozisa just outside Pietermaritzburg, decided that their chickens were not “sitting” well. As a consequence they decided to artificially incubate the eggs.
“We tried it with the first batch and it was a success,” said Pauline.
However, a second batch of eggs was mistakenly mixed with their supermarket eggs by their domestic worker and all placed in one basket.
Unable to tell the two batches apart, Pauline
decided to send all the eggs through for incubation, assuming that the supermarket eggs simply wouldn’t incubate.
But she was wrong.
Two weeks later the Youngs received a call from the colleague who handled the incubation for them. Laughing, he wanted to know about the “ridiculously hilarious chickens” they had sent him.
Curious, the Youngs rushed off to see the chickens, only to discover nine Koekoek chickens and 14 of the funniest-looking chickens they had ever seen.
“We could not believe our eyes,” said Pauline.
“Some had feathers sticking out in various directions, some had Mohawks and looked as if they were ready to play in a rock ’n’ roll band.”
Keith went on to say that every time he needed a good laugh he just had to look at these chickens.
The Youngs have decided they will keep their happy surprises as pets.
“It seems as though these eggs survived so much that it would be heartbreaking to eat them,” said Pauline.
With 14 of these “miracle chickens” roaming around their yard, it is going to be a challenge for the Youngs to look after them – and name them.
“Maybe we could name one of them Nando’s or KFC?” said Keith. - Sunday Tribune