Hello everyone, we have another rescue lined up tomorrow! If you can offer a loving home to some of my ladies or you'd like to add to your existing flock then please get in touch. We always have hens available in Dumfries, we also do re-homing days in Moffat and Carlisle most weeks.
We have a re-homing day in Ayr on Saturday 9th May at 12pm, if you can make the day then please get in touch :-) Be a hen hero and give some hens a Life After Farming <3
April 24th 2015 marked a very special day for us. We passed a massive milestone... 10,000 hens saved from slaughter! An achievement we are very proud of. We are also proud to have such wonderful support in the form of our volunteers, our donators and the people who give our hens a second chance at life. Without you we wouldn't be here, we wouldn't be giving hens a future after farming and on behalf of the ten thousand little ladies I want to say a massive thank you! To celebrate reaching this milestone we have released a new video available for you to watch below!
But of course our work doesn't stop here. For the lucky ones, their journey has had a happy ending but many more hens await our arrival to whisk them away to a better future. We will continue to work tirelessly to find them a life after laying.
1. Chickens can distinguish between more than 100 faces of their own species. Looks like elephants aren’t the only ones who have a great memory.
2. Chickens know who’s boss—they form complex social structures known as “pecking orders,” and every chicken knows his or her place on the social ladder.
3. Chickens have full-color vision—no color-blindness here!
4. Who likes to sunbathe? Apparently everyone—humans, cats, dogs, and chickens too! You can’t blame them.
5. Chickens are real sleeping beauties--they experience rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which means they dream just like we do.
6. Chickens have pain receptors that give them the ability to feel pain and distress. Put yourself in the shoes (or the feathers) of a battery hen—or 452 million of them, which is how many are used for their eggs each year.
7. Hens defend their young from predators. Looks like calling someone a “chicken” is actually a compliment!
8. Who needs pepper spray? Chickens have more than 30 types of vocalizations to distinguish between threats.
9. Chickens are just like human mothers who talk to their babies in the womb—a mother hen begins to teach calls to her chicks before they even hatch.
10.Last but not least, chickens are adorable—take a look for yourself!
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I was fascinated by this article so I thought i'd share it!
Hens are capable of mathematical reasoning and logic, including numeracy, self-control and even basic structural engineering, following research.
Traits such as these are normally only shown in children above the age of four, but the domesticated birds have an ability to empathise, a sophisticated theory of mind and plan ahead.
Studies over the past 20 years have revealed their finely honed sensory capacities, their ability to think, draw inferences, apply logic and plan ahead."
The animal is capable of distinguishing numbers up to five and is familiar with transitive inference - the idea in logic that, if A is greater than B, and B is greater than C, then A is greater than C.
For a chicken, this could be applied to fighting. If the first chicken beat the second, who had already beaten the third, the third chicken would assume that the first chicken would beat them too.
The birds also have an understanding of physics, which was shown in experiments where they showed more interest in realistic diagrams than those that defied the laws of physics.
Young chicks knew that an object that moves out of their sight still exists, unlike human babies who only develop those skills aged one.
Chickens also showed the ability to plan ahead and exhibit self-control, with 93% of hens understanding that if they waited longer to start eating food, they would be allowed access to it for longer.
Further evidence of hens’ intelligence comes from tests showing that at just two weeks’ old, they can navigate using the sun by taking into account its height and position during the day.
Oh, I'm so proud of the little ladies. Clever little hens!
Phew, it's good to be back in my wellies! lol. Yesterday was the Dumfries and Galloway People of the Year Awards. Probably the most surreal day of my life! Those of you who know me personally would know I was way out of my comfort zone, they wouldn't let me take a few chickens along with me and I had to swap the trench coat and wellies for something a little fancier!
It was also a day of reflection. It really got me thinking about Homes4Hens. Thinking about its almost accidental creation - there was never a plan, I just saw a way to help some hens that I thought really needed it and it makes me happy doing it. I never thought things would go this far and I certainly never imagined that one day I would be in front of 500 people and receiving an award! Totally surreal. It has encouraged me and spurred me on, to know that people do care and they appreciate the good that we are spreading around Scotland. A perfect ending to the year and motivation to really go for it next year.
We have several big plans in line for next year which will hopefully result in even greater numbers of hens being rescued and spreading their feathery joy in to peoples lives in every corner of Scotland.
The ceremony was a really nice day, I enjoyed it thoroughly, but its good to be back, we've got work to do!
Thank you to everyone who nominated me. The host read out some of the things people had said about me and it was really touching, i'm pleased and really honoured. The guests did get a laugh at the ceremony when it was said on stage that amongst all the nominations, 6 hens had also nominated me!
Plans are being made to hold Hen keeping workshops at the Homes4Hens HQ in Dumfries next year.We are often asked by people interested in keeping hens if we do such a thing and up till now we never really considered it. So as from March 2014 we will begin trailing the course. The first workshops will be held at the start of March and rather than the usual charge of £19 the first session we hold will be donation only, just so we can see what works and what doesn't. It will be a great opportunity to meet like-minded people with an interest in hens and Kathryn will be demonstrating techniques for treating sour crop, using mite powder, administering medicines and clipping wings. The course will be aimed at beginners but everyone is welcome. Coffee and biscuits will also feature quite heavily in the day! For more information please click here
The cold winds, the rain and the dreaded white stuff. Seems like only yesterday we were laughing at the hens rolling around and dust-bathing in the summer sun, is there a funnier sight?? lol.
The winter is here and most of the hens are witnessing it for the first time! I personally enjoy the changes in seasons and it is lovely to see the hens experiencing something new but there are a few things to be cautious about when it comes to looking after our precious girls.
Most hens will do fine through winter, they do after all have their own built-in feather duvets but the girls that are still lacking in the feather department need to be kept an eye on, knitted chicken jumpers are a worthwhile idea and if anyone out there is a whizz with the knitting needles and would like to donate some jumpers for us to distribute they would be received gratefully!
In really freezing conditions you can put vaseline on the girls combs and wattles to protect them from frost bite and remember to check the drinking water isn't frozen up!
I tend to give our hens a warm breakfast to keep them toasty and mixed corn at night. In the coop, lots of straw for them to snuggle down in. Its important that the coop is reasonably free of draughts and definitely free of water leaks. If you are concerned your coop isn't warm enough I came across a great tip.. An old piece of carpet on the roof covered with plastic sheeting acts as roof insulation and keeps the hens body heat inside the coop, sounds cosy! Just be sure not to cover the ventilation at the top of the coop. There is lots you can do to help make winter a nicer experience for the first-timers. Comments here are very welcome if anybody wants to add anything or request chicken jumpers. I have a few bundles of wool up for grabs here for anyone who wants to get busy with clickers!
Good evening friends of homes4hens. This is the first installment of our blog! In the last few days we have been looking at ways to improve the website. You may have noticed a whole new theme! Other than the new look, more care information has been added, also a store which will have all sorts of chicken items for sale and of course this blog! We have been looking at ways to improve our search engine ranking, this is to ensure that anyone out there in Scotland and Northern England that is looking for a place that has hens they won't have any trouble finding us. One of the things that improves our ranking on google is to have regular activity on the website, something like... a blog. Ha! So now you know why your reading this! The need for regular activity means you can be certain of my continued waffling on here so stay tuned for behind-the-scenes updates detailing the comings and goings of the project that is Homes4hens. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone that is involved with Homes4hens, from our wonderful and dedicated volunteers who work tirelessly and selflessly to ensure our continued success to those of you who have done your bit to offer a home to hens in need. I know my continued "thank you" messages have become a bit of a private joke amongst a few but I cannot help being humbled by the generosity and kindness of people. Anyway, on with show! Goodbye for now.