Hello and welcome to The Compost Bin. I'm Compostwoman and I live with my family in rural Herefordshire. We have nearly four acres of garden and woodland, all managed organically and to Permaculture principles, which we share with Chickens, Cats and assorted wildlife. We also grow a lot of our own food, run courses in all sorts of things and make a lot of compost!

I am a Master Composter and have spent more than a decade as a volunteer Community Compost adviser with Garden Organic and my local Council.
I'm a self employed Environmental Educator so I run workshops and events where I talk about compost, veg growing, chicken keeping, cooking, preserving and sustainable living. I also run crafts workshops and Forest School/outdoor play sessions in our wood.

We try to live a more self sufficient lifestyle here, as best we can, while still having a comfortable life and lots of fun.

To learn more about us click on the About Compostwoman tab and remember to click on the photos to make them full size!

Sunday 22 April 2012

Some pictures of the new rescue hens.

The hens, out in the sunshine.

This is Bunty - very bright, very friendly!

 Ginger! A frighteningly bright chicken who has already captured my heart - she is actually Ginger 3 - I reserve the name for eggstra special bright hens ...!

Tiny and Titch show their bald bottoms

This is Tiny - she is so very small :-( But feisty and getting stronger every day.
 Still very shy and scared, though. Runs away if I try to stroke her :-(

And this is  Titch - a bit larger than Tiny, but not by much :-( She seems to want to follow me around and sit on my feet :-)

Ginger, Bunty and Babs enjoy some synchronised eating!

This is Babs - she is a bit slow to work things out at the moment and often finds herself on " the wrong side of the fence"  She is lovely, though.

Ginger, delving deep into the feeder for that last, tasty, little morsel of mealworm!

They are all lovely and such different characters    - and we are loving watching them become "proper" hens,

as they should have been allowed to be from birth.


  1. There's something lovely and calming about watching chickens being chickens, but seeing these poor things being able to do the chickens ought to do at long last must be especially satisfying, Sarah.

    How are they getting on sorting out the pecking order, or did they know each other well enough for that already to have been sorted?

    Do you have any tips on how to get chickens accustomed to being picked up? Is it best to give them a cuddle when they have just gone up to roost and are feeling sleepy or is that likely to make them feel insecure?

  2. Pecking order - they were all in the barn together but may not have been in the same part so may not know eachother at all - so far a few minor pecks but nothing bad. I I expect the worst of it to happen in a few days, as they get stronger!

    With regards to the picking up hens - they will get more friendly as the days go by - I always have something to eat in my pocket whenever I go out so a new bird rapidly gets to know I mean food! Also take advantage of every time she squats for you to pick her up and gentle her. (But, if she has not yet started laying, she won't be doing this yet)

    As regards getting hen out at bedtime - I have found that not to work, but I know other people say it does.

    Sometimes, though, some hens are less friendly than others and don't like being handled very much.

  3. Thanks, Sarah. It's our Blue(belle) that seems most timid of us at present. Fudge was most timid to begin with but seems to have cottoned on that we mean food and protection. Smokie hasn't let us pick her up yet and runs if we go near her.

  4. Lovely to see them out and about in the sunshine.

    I always find that birds that have been part of a much larger flock, as in rescued barn hens like yours and rescued free-rangers as we have, tend to sort their pecking order out quite quickly and sociably when they become a smaller gang, and they quickly become 'themselves' which is lovely to observe.

    Sue xx

  5. They look so much better already, happy too. Lovely photos of the girls, especially the last one!


Hello! Thank you for reading my blog and for commenting. I try to reply as quickly as I can and I really appreciate your interest in my life and doings here in The Compost Bin.