The back-to-the-land movement happening during the pandemic has now extended to chickens.
More people have taken up gardening as an extension of the “eat local” philosophy. Now some urban folks are renting hens as a low-commitment way of sourcing their own fresh eggs.
The North American company Rent The Chicken has launched the “yard to table” concept, allowing people — including those living in Red Deer and other Alberta communities — to adopt poultry with no strings attached.
The rent-a-chickens can be returned “back to the homestead” at any time, the Pennsylvania-based company promises.
Alternatively, if families get really attached to their hens, they can permanently adopt them.
Rental packages include two to four egg-laying chickens, a portable coop, food and water dishes, as well as poultry food for six months.
Yard size is, apparently, not an issue as the wheeled coops can fit into a space as small as 10 by 15 feet.
Renters can expect to get from eight to 28 fresh eggs a week, depending on chicken numbers.
As for noise concerns, Rent the Chicken states: “Your neighbour’s dog is louder than a hen.”
The same company is also offering a potential science lesson to stay-at-home learners with its Hatch the Chicken program.
What’s described as a five-week experience “without the commitment of raising chicks” comes with an instruction booklet and all the equipment needed to hatch chicks and see them through their first two weeks of life.
The fluffy chicks move from incubator into brooder box. “When they are not as cute” and more odoriferous, “we pick them up and return them to the farm,” states the company.
For more information, visit www.facebook.com/RentTheChicken.