There’s something about hens…I’m not exactly sure why I like them so much – it’s a bit uncool and slightly eccentric to be passionate about something with feathers. But it’s true…even my son said, “Give Mum something with a chicken theme and she’s happy.”
Am I this simple and predictable? Yes.
I’ve analysed this chook-love from different angles and this is why I love them:
- They make great pets because – they have personality and are surprisingly clever. Where the expression “bird-brain” came from mystifies me 🙂
- They mob me on a daily basis as though I’m a rock star (like no other living creature mobs me, human or otherwise).
- Their poo is a rich fertiliser (if only I would take the time to spread it on the garden).
- They lay eggs each day (no one else has personality and lays an egg).
- Friends and family adore me (but I think it’s because of the free eggs).
- They eat scraps and so are walking compost bins.
- They will rid the garden of insects (note downside).
- They turn any garden into a bomb site in a matter of hours if you let them out of the coop.
- They get egg-bound and other chook conditions 😦
- If you mistake a girl-chick for a boy-chick it will soon turn into a rooster (and wake you predawn).
- Hens stop laying after a few years yet you keep feeding them into chookie old age (happily repaying them for their years of service).
Anyone who has eaten a home-laid egg will attest to its superior taste and quality. Fluoro yellow in colour, they lend baking a gorgeous technicolour touch.
There is one big downside to keeping chickens which I’ve avoided mentioning to this point: Foxes. It’s a big downside and must be addressed if you want to avoid misery and heartbreak (for you as well as the birds). But more on this later…
Do you like hens? What pet makes you passionate?