Happy Easter




IMG_6644This is the continuing story of our adventures keeping hens in our urban back garden.

Hens come and go, but our current hens (as of July 2018) are two Pekin Bantams, who are quite elderly and are together known as The Moppets (we once had seven, but as we could never tell them apart we never bothered with individual names!); Deanna (Blue Maran), Dorcas (Cou-cou Maran) and Delilah (Light Sussex) who arrived in March 2017, known collectively as The Three Amigos (!); and our new arrivals, Emily and Evangeline (Mille Fleur Bantams) and Esther and Elsie (Light Sussex Bantams), who arrived 7th July 2018. 

Keeping hens is always an adventure … I hope you enjoy following our story  🙂

March 25th 2017

2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 4,100 times in 2013. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 3 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Frustrated …

I’m frustrated by my inability to upload pics from my tablet to the ‘net directly – it should happen with the touch of a button, but I have to send them by email. And I need to try again to write a post with photos on the tablet, too … but for now, I’m happy playing with the new camera and it’s just as easy to upload them to the computer via the SD card as before!


Once again we have four bantams in the nest box … but if I’m right, only two of them are actually broody now! We have had a couple of eggs most days for a week, and on occasion three …


A couple of the Moppets spend most of their time in the run or on the grass (what there is left of it), and they are (finally) learning to come when I appear as I may have corn … but it’s still not the rush of cupboard love I get from the ex-batts!


Milly has had no further episodes of bleeding from her tail, but I’m convinced she loses a few more feathers each day.

We’ve had a heatwave, along with the rest of the country (amazing! And in summer, too!), so the grass in the Hen Garden is not regrowing terribly well. So we’re having to ration their access. I’m trying to leave a decent area for them to forage when we’re away (we have house-sitters coming to stay this holiday – I do hope they know what they are letting themselves in for!).

In the meanwhile, the rest of the garden prospers …



and the cats find ways of keeping cool/comfortable …


Misty is well hidden among the shrubs …


Two story accommodation for felines? No, just a garden chair …



Can anyone tell me if this is simply a ladybird, or is it a harlequin? I suspect it is the invasive species, but while it’s eating the aphids on the runner beans I shall leave it be :(


Site statistics

It’s fascinating to see just where people view this blog from … I suspect some of these are looking for sites to spam, while others will search for something that brings up an unexpected result, but even so, this is an amazing list of blog views for the Hen Garden over the past 12 months …

Hen Blog views 12 months

I couldn’t fit all the single digit views in the image … but there are twice as many countries again as above!

Thank you to everyone who makes blogging such fun!


To those of you who couldn’t view the second or third video in the last post … I forgot to change the settings. Try again now!

A tidier site …

I’ve been playing with the layout of the Hen Garden website (I know I need to do some rearranging of the Hen Garden itself … but it’s still very cold out there, so I’m putting it off for a few days!) … and especially the pages.

Links to Hen Care websites, Hen Facts and Hen Books are now combined here

Links to Hen Blogs and Hen Keepers Forums are now combined here

Hen Pictures and Profiles can be found here

Links to Hen Rescue sites are now here.

And I’ve added a recipe here

Hopefully, that means the sidebar is a bit tidier, and that useful links are more accessible. Do take a look around and tell me what you think :)

Once Upon a Flock

I’ve been following Lauren Scheuer’s blog Scratch and Peck ever since I first came across her wonderful illustrations …

This month, Lauren’s book, Once Upon a Flock, was published. Subtitled ‘Life with my soulful chickens’, it’s a delightful account of Lauren’s love affair with her hens (and a dog called Marky) … one with which most backyard henkeepers will identify. The book is full of illustrations and photographs, but it’s the story that really absorbs your attention, as Lauren tells how she got started with hens (and eventually grew a rooster all of her own) … and like any good story it has its ups and downs (as you’ll know if you read her blog or follow her on FB).

Visit Lauren’s blog for details of a blog tour and more reviews.


IMG_6500This is the continuing story of our adventures keeping hens in our urban back garden.

In March 2013 we took on a family of seven Pekin bantam hens and three ex-battery hens, an established flock that needed a new home. In April 2013 we added four new ex-batts to the brood.

Bantams are a new experience for us, although we have had ex-batts before. But keeping hens is always an adventure … I hope you enjoy following our story  :)

Hens come and go, but our current hens are ex-batts MandyBetsy, Babs and Bertha, collectively known as The Vicarage Girls. The Pekins were Amy, Abigail, Alice, Annie, Agnes, Alberta and Amelia (aka The Moppets) – we have since lost two, but I never could tell which was which …

New Links

Just to draw your attention to a couple of new links on the Hen Care page …

Caring for Pet Chickens – from My Chickens and Me, an online magazine covering all aspects of hen care.

The Private Life of Chickens – is part two of a three-part BBC series on “barnyard animals” (episodes one and three take a look at pigs and cows). In this episode, farmer Jimmy Doherty goes on a quest to learn more about chicken communication and our long history with this animal.

  • The Hen House Archive

    Our original hen keeping adventure came to an end in January 2013, when a fox took our entire brood of hens. But don’t let that put you off … you can find the story at The Hen House Archive where there are still lots of stories, photos, and information about keeping hens I hope you'll find useful.

    July 2018 … Four new girls arrive, two LS bantams and two Mille Fleur Pekins.

    June 2018 … We had an extended heatwave, with daily temperatures in the 30s.

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