by little red pen

20151216_181726So, this happened. As I write, I am watching my hens fossicking in the grass on the bank. We spent most of the year building a coop and run, by which I mean my father-in-law designed and built it with our help over a couple of visits from Australia and we did bits in between with many phone calls and questions back and forth across the Tasman. We got the hens from HennyPenny, a free-range outfit in Omakau that sells beautiful, healthy Hyline point-of-lay chooks.

20151218_162843We got the girls last weekend and have spent the week getting to know them. They started laying almost the first day, and are now producing an egg or two a day between them. We got three hens: Helen, Angelina and Tilda. Angelina has darker colouring and appears to be the leader of the pack. Tilda is paler and likes to be hand-fed grass. Helen is in-between, and likes to keep her own counsel.

P1090818They are doing all the right chicken things: roosting on their perch at night, scratching for bugs, using their nest boxes, dust-bathing and following me back into the coop when I take them their supper. Their eggs are small, brown and really intense. They are spending a lot of time grazing around the berry bushes and they seem fond of rock melon. I stroked them yesterday, and they are soft as silk. And warm. Lovely.

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