Last Saturday I wrote about how Freshstart for Hens works and what happens to chickens who are farmed intensively for eggs. (See http://farmerswifeandmummy.com/2014/02/15/giving-ex-commercial-hens-a-fresh-start/)
This week was the exciting bit. I have just got back from picking up our ten ladies who have come to live with us.
The lovely Kerry whose house was used for the Leigh collection point was lovely. She emailed me in the week with her address and told me what time to collect my girls.
Hubster made a rare outing with me (driver and official photographer) and we arrived just as the lovely Emma and Liz from the Wolverhampton team of Freshstart volunteers, were unpacking their van.
There were hundreds of hens in the van, all going to new homes like the one we have provided. How amazing are these people to give up their precious time on a Saturday to help some chickens to freedom?
Liz and Emma had to dash off as they were going to Chester next to drop of so then came the fun bit. We had to pick out ladies. I hate this part as really, I would have liked to take them all but they are all going to good homes and, being the farmer that he is, Hubster made most of the decisions for me as he is quicker at catching chickens.
The smelt terribly. They travelled quite well for the three-or-so miles back to the farm and, after a dose of mite powder, we introduced them to their new coop.
Gok the silkie went to welcome them and, I’m not going to lie, as each one came out of the door, they received a bit of Gok lovin’ but they honestly didn’t seem to mind.
They seem to be having a great time in their new home and, as I did my hundredth head count, I opened the human door to the coop to find the tenth just leaving to go outside and there, in the nesting box, was the best thank you we could have received. Our first egg.
Freshstart for hens do an absolutely wonderful job. Like I said last time, the hens are not guaranteed to lay well as they have been through their ‘first moult’ but even one egg a week is good enough for me.
Chickens are the most addictive animal you can get. Once you get a couple, you can’t help but want more. Since entering the clucky world, I have never met so many nice people. Chicken enthusiasts (I sometimes call us chicken-lovers but I can’t help but thinking that it sounds wrong) give you advice and help whenever you ask them and chickens have certainly enriched our lives here.
I just hope we never have to buy anaemic supermarket eggs ever again and that our lovely girls will live long, happy lives.
To find out more about Fresh Start for hens and to see when their next re-homing dates are, visit: http://www.freshstartforhens.co.uk/