Behold my nominee for a place on the list of the all-time cutest chicks in Princeville.
This is my garden chick, the Irish chick, Kirwan.
At this time, Kirwan mostly walks plantigrade. Birds are digitigrade walkers, they walk on their toes. Most of the chicks are not quite up to that, they walk plantigrade, like humans and bears; weight is borne on the whole foot. Sometimes people think birds have backwards knees, but they are actually seeing the ankle and heel. In this photo of a father and chick, the band is technically on the bird’s foot, not his leg. The joint above that is his ankle, not his knee.
Lately Kirwan has been waddling down to street level to give his many fans a treat: a glimpse of his endearingly chubby, clumsy self. His plantigrade locomotion just adds to the overall impression of a kid who has not quite stepped over into the realm of adulthood.
He ended up sitting on his rocky throne, surveying his kingdom of admirers. He had left souvenirs of previous visits to this spot.
For those of you who walk by my house to see Kirwan, who is now featured on the tour bus that goes through my neighborhood, you may have to look around for him now. He is exploring his world and strengthening his limbs. If you are very lucky, you may see him being fed by his mother or father. If, on the other hand, he is hiding his head or pecking at an adult, that is one of those annoying non-nesters that stop by periodically to bother him on their neighborhood patrols.
He does not “suffer fools gladly.”