Posts Tagged ‘St Brigit’

The escapologist chicken


Chicken- Isabelle

Chicken checks to see if anyone’s looking


On every ‘To do’ list I have made in the past year, there includes the item, ‘fencing’. Every now and then I actually get round to patching up the slightly bodged arrangement I set up before getting chickens in our garden, I think it’s sorted and then a couple of days later Isabelle is spotted scratching up a flower bed having once again made her way out of our Tiny Farm enclosure.

It’s always the same chicken and she always does a runner when no one is about to spot how she’s doing it, so I have to guess where the weak spot is before I can patch it up.

The maddening part is that she’ll remain contained for a while, before she mockingly proves me wrong by reappearing in the middle of the lawn. Oh dear, looks like you got it wrong again, sorry about that.

Before you ask, their wings are clipped. We did it as soon as we got them, but I’m not sure why we bothered. Immediately after they’d been chopped they started jumping up to some impressive heights. They appeared to be showing off. Wow, that’s better those feathers were actually weighing me down. Now I feel free.

We had some break outs when they initially moved in. They’d managed to squeeze through gaps in the hedge which led to a panicked trip round the corner to catch the runaways and shove them back through the hedge where my son was waiting to put them safely back into the run until the gap could be plugged. Stood in the right place, an uninformed pedestrian could have witnessed an eight-year-old produce three live chickens from the middle of a hedge. Ta-Daa.

Since these teething troubles, the girls have clearly chosen to stay put, except for this one hopping hen. Seeing as she never really goes anywhere or does anything on her little jaunts, I can only assume she’s doing it to piss me off.

She’s succeeding. Once again I have to imagine I am an irritating chicken with a death wish, and work out exactly how I would make my escape, before I get busy with the fencing wire and staple gun.

My husband thinks that she’s limboing under the gate, which I doubt, but will patch up anyway to appease him. My son thinks she’s using a crack in the universe which appears in the coop and transports her to the veg patch. This seems nearly as unlikely as the limboing, but I’ve said I’ll seal the crack with a time paradox, just to appease him.

I think she’s talking a run-up and leaping over the willow screen. So that’ll have to be raised another foot, but that’s as far as it’ll go, so if she continues to magically appear outside the Tiny Farm. I may have to consider catching her out with undercover CCTV, or tethering her to the shed, or pitching to Channel 5 a show called “Houdini Hen”.


PS. On All Saints Day, I shall be praying to St Brigit, the patron saint of chicken farmers.