Hen-like behaviour

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The girls don’t hold back when bread porridge is served. They’re easily pleased – it’s simply wholemeal bread soaked in water overnight

There are some striking similarities between flocks of chickens and groups of humans as Country Living‘s henkeeping writer Suzie Baldwin has reflected in her mini column in this month’s issue. Hierarchy is evident in their pecking orders, reflecting similar structures in human social groups and organisations. Other behaviours have amusing parallels in the workplace.

Our Bluebell hen is always the first to get stuck into apple bobbing
Our Bluebell hen is always the first to get stuck into apple bobbing

Last weekend I couldn’t help likening the way the girls seized on the treats I gave them to the excitement at CL’s HQ when there’s a delivery of cakes or biscuits or – even better – a member of the team has brought in some home baking, which is a frequent occurrence, thankfully. There’s often a flurry of excitement around the central feeding area – in our case, the top of a filing cabinet in the middle of the office. We’ve been particularly peckish this week due to the colder (but lovely and bright) weather – this has entailed popping to the newsagent and purchasing bags of sweets. And our poultry counterparts take every chance to top-up their layers’ pellets with extra snacks. Not chocolate, of course, but a pail of bread porridge goes down very well, as do apples on the canes that we stuck into the ground, corn scattered in the run and a hanging corn feeder in the undercover area (below).

Meanwhile, the Araucanas are hopefully getting to work and are preparing to lay some beautiful blue eggs for our delectation. Will keep you posted. Anyone else’s pure breeds laying yet?!

James has made the undercover run really cosy for the hybrids, using a combination of clear plastic sheeting (to allow the light in) and wooden boards
James has made the undercover run really cosy for the hybrids, using a combination of clear plastic sheeting (to allow the light in) and wooden boards

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