When we moved house, our hens went on an extended holiday back where they they came from - my cousin Jen's orchard. They had hatched from her Light Sussex bantams and Jenny worked unscrupulously to insinuate them into our hearts. The consequence is that we are now convinced poultry keepers - but without our hens!!
We make visits to them, but they have no recollection of who we are. Jill calls their names plaintively ... but she gets a disdainful response, rather like that of adolescents embarrassed by their parents. Here they are, with the rescue battery hens and proud Edison - the cockerel all having great fun tucking into flowering broccoli we had brought from the allotment.
Not wishing to puncture Edison's balloon , but he makes a great cockerel shape, with head high .. and then emits a pathetic dribble of a crow. It is rather like the shy cough of a vicar at a tea party who wants another cup.
Jen's bantie hens are past laying, but ours still lay and have been presenting eggs regularly.
The good news is that one of the bantams is sitting on a mixed clutch of battery hen eggs and bantam eggs from our hens. And we think that the the maligned Edison has fertilised them! They may hatch this week!!!