The seven stages of becoming a chicken keeper

Stage one. Sniff uncertainty in the air. Consider self-sufficiency. Realise that is never going to happen, but find the thought of chickens vaguely comforting.

Stage two. Discover that young live chickens cost more than dead ones.  Negotiate lucrative deal with Hen Rescue. Feel virtuous about saving poor factory chickens.

Stage three. Spend 10 times the cost of chickens on chicken housing and equipment.  Wonder if they will need toys? Farm suppliers do not sell chicken toys. Is this a gap in the market?

Stage four. Drive 50 miles to collection point. Wonder what a grateful chicken looks like. Mentally prepare for words of thanks from Hen Rescue volunteers.

Stage five. Brief exchange at collection point. A LOT of noise from the car boot on the way home. Chickens are released into freshly built palatial run and get busy digging for escape.

Stage six. One year learning curve.  Chickens like: Chasing the cat, going for walks up the road on their own, full use of garden and flowerbeds, hiding eggs in hedges, following people to see what they are doing, being served with freshly cooked rice and exploring the house. 

They do not appreciate being put back in their run think about things they have done.

Stage seven. Divide expenses by the number of eggs. Eggs are currently £10.47 a dozen.

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