We're chickens having fun

Here are some of my chickens in one of their favourite places - the old coal hole! The coal hole looks unhospitable and is dark and a bit dingy but it is a favourite with the chickens, so I relented, cleaned it up a bit and put a perch in it.

During the day they have acres of land to roam on from rough grass to my best efforts at a lawn. (And the flower beds, the gits) At night they retire to Chicken Central, a palatial split level residence with integral nest (which rarely gets used - we go egg hunting these days).

See them scratching around, having dust baths, chasing moths, and having fun. They come to my back door most mornings and ask for food. Sandra will come in and eat from my hand. They have a passion for bananas and rice and peas (a very big treat)

I look at them and cannot imagine that a chicken can be comfortable in a cage where it cannot turn around or indeed in a barn where it is overcrowded and unable to go about its natural business without being pecked. Chickens need room to retreat like most animals. Pack them in and the bickering gets worse than Big Brother.

This is a plea from the Weasel to consider that next time you buy chicken to eat (which I do but I don't eat chickens I know) please go for free range. Please encourage the money people to follow the money and favour farmers who treat chickens like living creatures and not like a product. Please. Thank you. And now back to the callathump.


Red said...

I wouldn’t DREAM of buying anything but free-range chicken and eggs.

I have never seen a battery farm in the flesh, but my brother-in-law has and from the description he gave, I gather it’s not really the type of place I would like to help keep in business by giving it my money.

The problem arises when you buy foodstuffs that contain eggs... from quiches to fresh pasta. Hell, even Quorn is bound with egg! I doubt that the companies producing these items are that bothered about where their ingredients come from.

So, unwittingly (or not so unwittingly, since I am well aware of it... shall I say lazily? Because I could make my own quiches and fresh pasta), I still contribute to the battery farm industry. And that sucks.

Your chickens are beautiful, and Nigel(la) is a corker!

And (last paragraph, I promise!) congrats on your ten years! When’s the big day?

wrinkled weasel said...

Thank you for your supportive comments, Red. I like long replies, so feel free.

Actually my tenth was last December. I feel really lucky because it's my second go at the marriage thing and well, after ten years you can think, "Yes, actually, I like this!"

We will try to post more Nigel/Nigella when we can get him/her to stay still!

I have to admit that the odd chicken nugget has passed my lips, so I'm no radical there!

a.c.t said...

I always buy 'free range' eggs but I know that they are not really free range. If the chickens are kept in a barn and not in cages, as long as the door is open, it's considered free range. By this stage the hens are too scared to go out anyway. They have their beaks clipped so they can't peck each other and stand up to their knees in their own dirt.
I once saw a documentary about how chicks are born - they put the eggs into an oven and they hatch inside on top of each other without their Mother and probably very scared.
I'm so ashamed because I'm well aware of these things yet I still buy them. The TESCO empire is next door so it's nothing but pure laziness. I wish I had a farm near by but as you'll no doubt agree, that's one of the downsides of living in London.