Myrtle, our small and gentle light Sussex bantam, has always been at the bottom of the pecking order. Until she became a mother, that is.
Over the past two weeks Myrtle has become the feistiest and most determined of new mothers.
When Merlin the cat approaches, she places herself between chicks and cat, clucks warningly, and faces him off with her beady brown eyes. Out-stared and out witted, Merlin invariably slinks away.
Despite their unequal size and strength, in the battle of wills between Myrtle and Merlin, Myrtle always wins.