Who loves house sits with chickens?

One thing I’ve missed over the last year, has been a house sit with chickens (or chooks for the Aussies). In England it seemed that every other sit we did had a few chickens, providing daily eggs as an extra house sit treat. My partner has a strange affinity with chickens and I know they would be high on his list if we ever settled.

Does anyone else here enjoy sits with chickens, have any funny stories, or challenges you’ve had to deal with in the hen house? What about the chickens that love to come visit in the house like these ones did? (Usually on the hunt for cat food!!)


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Love them. One of our first sit had free range hens - they were rounded up at night but got to wander around the property during the day. Some even went to visit the neighbours. It was a challenge finding the eggs but good fun. One of the chickens, we called her Priscilla, insisted on coming into the kitchen to watch me cook or bake. She gave a running commentary of what was happening and once I was finished we’d have a cup of tea and have a gossip about what the rest of the gang was up to.
I always get a little more excited when a sit involves chickens. Have you come across the new coups call eggloos? They are great and make cleaning out so much easier.

Elsie

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Is it this one Elsie… Eglu? By Omlet? That is making me laugh uncontrollably and I don’t know why… just seemed so funny! They look very good - wonder if we’ve any home owners here who’ve tried them out! Have you experienced one on a sit?

The image in my head of the running commentary while baking is too cute. But she’s probably saying “what do you think you’re doing with my eggs” :rofl:

Eglu_classic_on_bark_chippings

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Yes, that’s them. Our last sit had one on wheels with little doors into each compartment. The floor pulled out and they were just scrubbed clean. No messy newspapers. They coup could be jacked up and wheeled to a new bit of grass with the run attached so no messing about with wire or fasteners. If I ever get chickens I want one. So easy.
Priscilla was a character and we did love her but felt awful if I was cooking a chicken curry or something when she was around.
Elsie

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We also like them infact it has turned into a competition.
Who finds the most eggs.

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Free rangers are the best for egg hunts!! We are sometimes in competition with the dogs though :slight_smile:

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The chickens at the school where I work have an Egglu!

We did one sit on a roasting hot summer long weekend where one chook was particularly broody and refused to leave the hen house. I had to open the roof and lift her out every day to make sure she didn’t cook in there. She wasn’t even a little bit grateful! The kids nicknamed her Mrs Angry…

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We sat chickens for the first time in Suffolk, England about 5 years ago, they were rescues and the most engaging and fascinating creatures, there was a white silky who would strut into the kitchen when I was making dinner who I named Rod (Stewart) because that’s just who she reminded me of, picture is not Rod but a very cute imposter …

The things I learned about chickens, they are never still, they have their own “family groups” are inquisitive, friendly, intelligent and love space … and in an ideal world all should be able to live freely.

**Five things that may surprise you about chickens

  • Hens communicate with their chicks while they’re still inside their eggs! How adorable is that? …
  • Chickens have a great memory for faces! It’s true! …
  • Chickens are actually omnivores, not herbivores. …
  • Some research suggests that chickens are just as clever as human toddlers. …
  • Chickens tend to their eggs carefully.

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yes love sits with chickens. Had a recurring sit for. couple of years with two “saved” chickens from a battery farm. Oh my goodness these ladies were the funniest AND cheekiest animals I’ve been lucky to take care of. I don’t know how many times I had to shoo them out of the kitchen (as seen here in the photo) when they once again tried to sneak in and steal the cat biscuits. Then they’d run away and it really did look and sound as if they were killing themselves laughing. Unfortunately the owner told me just before a new sit this year that they both passed last year probably due to the last round of bird flu that broke out summer 2020 in the Netherlands.
image

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I had no experience at all so when we had to look after hens (+ 3 dogs, 1 cat, some tropical fish) in Costwolds, my 1st sit with THS. So my husband was in charge. The hen house was nice, the hens no trouble


the eggs organic, there were too many, we gave to the lady in charge of the horses
Last year in Kent, we faced a real problem with the hens :

The hens seemed too many in that small hen house, they were never let free.
But the worst problem was the vermine : once a week I had to clean up the straw, change it : when I did that, I noticed my arms were full of fleas !! I was obliged to call the owner who sent her daughters to solve the problem. It was so hot in Kent last august, fleas burst ! I undressed in the garden, put my clothes in the washing machine, ran to the shower. Horrible !!I
I was quite surprised by the lack of freedom during my sit in Kent, especially after having visited Chartwell, where there was a huge chicken coop. I ignore if it was Winston Churchill who had decided the size or the National trust ??

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To say the truth, I don’t like much hens but the owner of my next sit at the end of september (in south west of France) warned me she has 2 hens who walk freely in the garden. I much prefer to see them free than stuck in a small house.
This owner asked me if my young dog (she was ready to accept him, how nice) would chase them. I really don’t know… I’m afraid he will (he loves to run after pigeons) so I can’t take the risk. Too dangerous. Are hens pets ? I guess so when owners never eat them. I saw incredible photos of cuddles between hens and humans

@Provence many keep chickens as pets, rescue centres re home ex battery hens, they really are amazing …

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Oh I love chickens, well really any barnyard birds. I’ve raised chickens myself both for eggs and meat on and off for years so I’m always happy to have a sit involve a few feathered friends. Chickens are fascinating creatures, their social behaviour starts to get really interesting in larger flocks.

Has anyone ever looked after guinea fowl on a sit? I have a real soft spot for guineas. They are somewhat of an acquired taste as they can be exceptionally loud and obnoxious, not to mention they’re thick as bricks, but there’s something just so endearing about them - and the eggs (when you can find them) are amazing!

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I haven’t looked after any chickens yet - but I have a sit lined up for the end of August with some - I’m looking forward to it (and the eggs for breakfast!)

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Egg-celent!! What nationality will your chickens be Andrew? One thing that sometimes surprises people is that they only naturally lay during summer months (you should be fine if in the northern hemisphere!). They can of course be tricked with lots of light, which is what happens commercially :frowning: Let us know how your first experience with chickens turns out :slight_smile:

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They will be in England @Vanessa-Admin - so I’m hoping/eggspecting (see what I did there!) some eggs :slight_smile:

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:rofl: :rofl: Wishing you lots of :egg: :egg: :egg: :egg:

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So you have a sit at last !!

We love caring for chooks, they are a lot more interesting than we ever knew! We made these 3 a yummy seed roll treat, they absolutely loved it :yum::yum:

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I love this picture Julie! And your genius feeding idea! You could take them walking with that I’m sure :rofl:

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