Catching up with the chickens

Getting chickens was probably one of the least demanding things we’ve done since becoming smallholders. It seemed like. huge endeavour when we actually went to get our first flock, but it takes practically no effort to run a chicken. As long as they’re fed and watered and have a little house to snuggle up in at night (and that’s safe from foxes), they’re happy and they simply get on with it, producing lovely eggs in huge numbers that our eldest son graciously bestows upon visitors as a mark of his favour.

Now that we’ve got them, I can’t imagine us ever being without them. As well as the eggs they also provide a pleasingly country soundtrack that’s very nice to hear as I potter about in the kitchen garden.

Dustbathing chicken

They delight in hoovering up caterpillars and they are a much underrated playdate commodity. Our current playdate standard is to give the visiting child an egg basket and take them to meet the hens, feed them corn and collect some eggs . It’s been a hit every time!


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We farm a three acre smallholding in Hampshire, England, having fled London in pursuit of the good life for our little family. We mess about with an assorted menagerie and try to be as self-sufficient as possible in meat and fruit and vegetables whilst enjoying our plot and an outdoors lifestyle with our son. I am the luckiest person that I know.

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