Tales from the Coop – Part 5

Hen bathing at its best… handy thigs washing up bowls!

Change, but for the better?

It’s been a little quiet in the coop of late, there have been a couple of hens who despite an active and thorough recovery plan, went to the great roasting tin in the sky. The remainder became subdued for all of twenty seconds and they were then bellowing for treats and broccoli.

Having four hens is just not enough for a decent game of sport so we were badgered into getting new substitutes for the forthcoming football match. It was decided we should recruit two new Barred Rock hens. They don’t lay so many eggs but are American in origin, big feisty and opinionated, perfect for a foil to our crew. The have an interesting colour ranging from white through to grey and finally charcoal colour on each feather.

I read recently on the ‘Chicken times’ that hens appreciate a low-level perch to rest themselves after a hard day’s football or whatever the cunning creatures had dreamed up. I googlywoogled a custom-made perch supported on wooden blocks with built in waterproofing, available in twelve colours but I wasn’t going to indulge them in one of those at £100. How do they have the audacity to charge that much plus £15 postage? Crooks!

I was sitting in the conservatory earlier and the answer presented itself. Some years ago, I bought an old-fashioned witch’s broom from the hardware store as a token of my respect and love for my MIL, watching her unwrap it on Christmas morning was a joy to behold, but fortunately I managed to duck as it hurtled into the conservatory under its own steam. Better than watching Harry Potter on pethidine!

The broom was consigned to the patio as an ornament and to remind the MIL every time she visited how much she was appreciated. By now it’s getting a little rotten so I sawed the head off and redeployed it to the hen run. I lifted two of their breeze blocks and fasted zip clips and locked the broom handle in place. Perfect! A perch for all seasons.

I resumed reading hen weekly but after five minutes I couldn’t concentrate through the cheering and shouting. They had moved the pole into the middle of the run and they were playing beach volleyball. That was a sight to be seen, the baby hens did look good in their bikinis but the older girls looked like they had muffin tops. Quite frankly it was awful, all the neighbourhood pigeons were lined up on the fence scoring them and falling off laughing at their stupid antics.

I made a cup of tea and by the time I had returned to my chair, they had changed the game, watching hens doing the high jump is not a pretty sight, they piled their straw up at the base of the pole, but in true hen style didn’t wait for the previous competitor to clear the pitch so they all ended up in a pile!

Typical hens, they have the concentration level of a goldfish and always randomly change the plan! Hens are strange creatures, put on this earth to have over their human herders! After much chasing the baby girls, Betty Bottom hen is still bottom hen much to her disgust. All the others keep laughing at her!  

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