Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Einstein and a peep of chookies

Almost all of my 'peep' of chookies
Well I thought it was about time I got some photos of the new hens out there to let them say hello to anyone reading. I've had a 'peep' (the collective word for a flock of hens), of 6 chookies (hens) from the early summer (the 6 brown hen bums on the far right in the picture!) - My original hens arrived off the ferry on a summer morning (by a haulier you understand they didn't travel all alone) and they were in their new homes by lunchtime the next day - we get these kind of hens in once a year at the local builders merchants. I don't know why the builders merchants orders point-of-lay hens as well as things like bricks, but I'm very glad they do. They have very funny personalities and one especially keeps having her own wee adventures - Karin the explorer!
 (I can't help but sing at them when I see them) 'Black bottomed girls' ........... you make the rocking world go round' (Misspelt Queen lyrics - but very appropriate, I think)
The new hens (another 5) are slightly different to mine, they've all got black bottoms like they been in the coal heap - it does make me giggle. These new hens had far less distance to travel, they came from my nearest neighbour, down the field, for free as they moved house and couldnt take the hens with them. Thier bad luck is my good luck, we've an understanding that should they decide they can have hens again, they will come and have a few of our flock in the future. I think thats a nice arrangement.
The new cockeral - Einstein, he looks very smart doesn't he?
The real Einstein was dyslexic, did you know that?
The 'peep' of chooks they gave me were a dad cockeral, a mum hen and 5 young birds (3 girls and 2 boys) - we've rehomed one of the boys already and are looking for a home for the other young boy - if you're in scotland and want a free cockeral do get in touch and I'll see if we can work a cunning plan. I've never owned a cockeral before with his funky bottom tail feathers (!), I have always only had female (laying hens). I'm not interested in growing hens for meat - so I've no need for a cockeral. But this chap seems to care for his ladies very much and I think maybe we might get along fine, good old Einstien!

Having a bit of grub in the snow
I'd recommend hens to anyone, even in a small garden you can have one or two in a little run - they are very interesting creatures and alot of fun to have as pets a bit of Chicken  information here. They are brilliant with children too and it teaches them about looking after your food (eggs) and how we care for them is a reflection of how we care for where our food comes from. Here is our first ever egg - collected by my daughter at our last house, a few years ago now - she had the honour of finding the first egg!! Its been that brilliant to own hens ever since that day.

Hens are the perfect family 'pet' to teach children about where their food comes from and for looking after animals who provide lovely fresh grub for us.
Very egg-citing (groan sorry!) we often can have alot of eggs and we try to barter with them, sell them to friends or we freeze eggs  if we've alot in the summer so we can have eggs in the winter time when the hens might not lay as well.  In terms of other great things they provide - well, they do provide alot of material for the compost heap from their bedding and thier poop is an excellent fertiliser once its rotted down a bit - which I can reycle into the garden. Hens are a real all-rounder!
Lots of lovely eggs which we can eat, swap and sell to friends to pay for the hen food - we all win!
There you go then - the new girls and boys are all settled in now, 10 happy girl hens means lots of happy eggs, they seem to be at home and everyone seems to be getting along quite well, brown bottomed, black bottomed and funky tail feathered bottomed! Only my original hens are laying at the moment (normally 6 a day still), sometimes less but I'm hoping Einstein will encourage them all to lay once they are settled in, he's bound to be a very clever chap with a name like Einstein!
Einstein the cockeral, having an explore.
Einstein once said [about Nature]
Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty.

What a clever chap.


  1. I remember my first egg excitement :)

    I never knew the collective noun for a group of hens - feel all edumacated now lol,

  2. Me too dreamer - good old google!!!

    I found it very funny - a peep - never heard of it until tonight - I've been edumicated too!


  3. I hope to have a small coop with six hens by spring time. I have read three books already on chicken keeping. You hens are just lovely.

  4. lovely hens Fay. Interesting that you can keep them in a small garden too. Mmmm I might have a think about that.

  5. Black bottomed girls you make the clucking world go round... Sorry, couldn't resist! Love the builders merchants being hen suppliers to the Island, that is taking diversification to another level. I am left with the image of the hens huddled together at the ticket booth counting their change to make sure they could all make it on to the boat to reach you...

  6. I'd highly recommend them - I hope you both manage a wee coup!

    Janet - they would look silly, and they'd all have to have their own money - cos they can't keep a 'kitty' obviously

    Oh dear all this writing up has gone to my head!