The Best Present Ever!
For five lucky chickens, Christmas just got a whole lot brighter as they just received the best present a chicken ever could.
But it was not to be found as they sheltered and scratched about under the low-hanging branches of the tree the abandoned quintet had gathered. Granted though, the soft soil did offer many delectable treats.
No, the far grander bounty was to come as loving hands clasped firm their wings to their sides and gently placed them one by precious one into a secure and comfortable pet carrier – a far cry from the two cardboard boxes that lay open nearby.
The haphazard placement of these giving the greatest of hints as to how the vulnerable animals had been ferried to their dubious fate.
A quick scout around the outer Melbourne suburban cricket ground to ensure no one was left behind and the curious feathered wonders were then sanctuary bound.
With full health checks complete, it was revealed that the hapless birds had brushed up against more than the one unkindness: all suffered lice infestations and were underweight; one timid hen was found to have multiple fractures to her leg that will require extensive surgery; another had succumbed to a reproductive issue common to her breed for which treatment has hastily been enacted.
Yet despite it all, the birds have readily taken to receiving the full brunt of the best Christmas present a chicken could ever find – a future.
And a bright and shiny one at that.
So named to reflect this festive time of year are these lucky birds: four sweet hens, Dasher, Dancer, Prancer and Vixen, and a handsome white rooster now affectionately known as Saint Nick – for all surely were found in the nick of time.
Footnote to this story: Please remember this, that the true meaning of Christmas is compassion, and spreading peace and goodwill to all regardless of faith or form. With this in mind and heart, the best present we can give is one that does not require wrapping or bows, nor does it cost a cent, for it is our kindness. And best given in abundance.
Around 4.40 pm on the 11th of January 2023, hope met the reality of our promise, as the last Silkie rooster was removed from the tiny wire prison that had been his home for heaven knows how long.
Just over a week on from that fateful day when the plight of hundreds upon hundreds of sweet Silkie chickens came under our radar. And so too our kindness.
With his eclectic mix of colour and an outrageous little “do,” dear Elton John stands before us today.
Camouflage – synonyms: disguise, hide, conceal, keep hidden, mask, screen, veil, cloak, cover, cover up, obscure, shroud.
There’s a Starman in our little brood of rescued Silkie roosters. And although we know he’d like to come and meet us, his little side-steps tell us perhaps that time is not just yet.