Our dominant chicken, Gladys, is in the middle, second-in-command Joyce is off to the right and shy girl Jean is hiding amongst the lemon leaves.
I don't think I've mentioned that our little group here in the Yellow Wood has expanded by three recently - a couple of weeks ago we got ourselves three chickens. They are still a little stand-offish around us and won't be picked up except under great sufferance but they are gradually (at their own pace, thank you very much) becoming more and more a part of our domestic landscape.They are absolutely bursting to get out of their coop in the mornings when I go to open up the door, they fly over the top of each other from any part of the yard when they hear me at the back door, eager to see what foodstuff I have on offer this time (or simply to see what it is I'm going to do), they stick together like glue (though they do have very distinct personalities and a - ahem - pecking order) and come nightfall (which is now of course coming a little earlier), they get themselves back into their coop and snuggle up together for a well-earned rest.
Embrace the day with vigour
Approach any opportunities that come your way with great enthusiasm
Stick close to those that love you
Know when the day is done and it's time for some respite
...I think these chickens might just be onto something!
PS We will be collecting their eggs with gratitude when they start laying, but our dear girls themselves will not end up on our plates.