Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Recycling the chicken house

In my last post I mentioned that we had decided not to get chickens for a while.

There were a couple of reasons for this.  I did some research on the internet to learn more about how to look after chickens.   I always thought that keeping chickens was  easy, but I was amazed to learn about all the various things you have to do to keep them in good condition.  Although I'm sure the villagers don't worry about all this, I'm new to it, so I decided to put the venture on hold for a while.  I haven't dismissed it entirely.  I just want to feel more confident about it.

I was also horrified to read that chickens encourage rats.  They eat the chicken food, as well as the eggs.  I have to admit to being more than a little concerned about this.  I loathe rats.  My fear of them stems from when I was a child and I saw another child being bitten by a rat.  I had nightmares for weeks.

We are  feeding three cats at the moment, so I feel confident that they will take care of  any rats that may be lurking in the shadows.

And talking of cats...they have taken rather a shine to the chicken house.   They clearly find it comfortable and settle in there for the night.

So the chicken house has now become a cat house!

Nesting baskets..straw removed and replaced with cushions are now cat beds

While I was searching the internet I came across a website for a company in the UK that supplies chickens along with everything that they need.

They give excellent advice, but I just had to copy the following page which I found hilarious:

Plan the Year for You and Your Chicken

National Chicken and Egg Day - Febuary 2nd
A day for thought and thanks for both the humble egg and the brilliant chicken. It is traditional to spend a few extra moments with your chickens a chance to reflect on the good times you've shared together. Perhaps you could organise a celebratory egg and spoon race, the official distance is one backgarden and the customary prize is a lemon meringue pie (see the recipe section for the recipe).
Pancake Day - Shrove Tuesday
Originating from a time long ago when women went regularly to church to confess their sins, the original and best Pancake Day Race is at Olney in Buckinghamshire. Incredibly the statistics show that to increase your chances of winning you should make the pancake using eggs produced from your own chickens as they produce a pancake with a more accurate flip.
Financial Year End April 1st
The deadline for your chickens to produce a detailed set of accounts for the previous year's production. Your incoming should be greater than your outgoings, if not cut back on expenses such as feeding morello cherries from Marks and Spencers until production targets are met.
Valentines Day February 14th
According to the legend, Saint Valentine wooed a princess by his brave and courageous acts on the battlefield but actually it was his ability to conjure up devine patisseries, tartes and delicacies in the kitchen, the finest of which were always served with a real egg custard that did the trick.
Your chicken arrival day
When did you get your first chicken? It is a date everyone can remember. So why not make a special occasion and have a proper Hen Party. Instructions are as follows: bake a cake, put the right number of candles on top, invite all your friends over and dance the night away.
Take Your Chicken To Work Day November 23rd
Tom Cruise famously took a chicken onto the set of Top Gun (1986) to help him learn some of the moves that his badly cast co-pilot Goose couldn't teach him. So make your chicken feel special and take her into work we all do. We will send you a free t-shirt if you send us a photo of your chicken at work.  Please only do this if it doesn't cause your chicken distress.
Your First Egg Day
It is always important to remember when you first became a farmer, tending your hens and collecting the precious eggs.
Christmas Day
Every day is like Christmas when you have chickens except that chickens haven't yet managed to wrap their presents. To celebrate this special day give the chickens a mince pie and bring them in to watch the Queen's speech. 



  1. I think whoever wrote this had overdosed on the eggnog.

  2. ROFL, Ayak! Sorry the chickens have been put on hold, but the cats look very comfortable there. You probably won't be able to evict them if and when you decide to get some chickens.

    I found chickens very easy to keep and the eggs were wonderful.

    1. I think Mr A will have to build another chicken house Perpetua

  3. Several of my colleagues (when I was working) kept chickens. It provided many a lively topic of discussion at meetings. Most of them adopted ex-battery hens who, with a bit of loving care, can be bought back into laying condition. I wouldn't keep hens myself (we are away from home too frequently to commit to any animal's welfare) but I didn't get the impression it was all that difficult.

    1. omentide, it's my own fault for googling so much. I shouldn't do it, and just get on with things. I'm still considering it.

  4. That is a hoot!

    But don't worry too much about rats. Keep the feed in a closed bin and don't put out too much...just what the hens will eat.

    1. I'm hoping we can have chickens at some point, and I am being reassured now by people who do keep them that it isn't difficult. I am being somewhat over-run by animals at the moment.

  5. This is tooo funny. Sometimes when I was growing up in the city Italians use to keep one or two chickens in the backyard....till the city would make them get rid of them.


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