The ‘It Bird’

by

-Title of an article by Susan Orlean in the September 26, 2009 New Yorker. She cites Martha Stewart as having been the possible inspiration for the latest wave of chicken love sweeping the nation. Martha included photos of her rare-breed chickens in her first book,’Entertaining’ and based the colors in her first line of paints on their egg shell colors. Orlean reminds us that before the 1930’s eggs were only availabe seasonally. We have just experienced this normal reduction or even cessation of laying, when day length decreases…I was told to expect it but somehow didn’t believe that light could make such a difference if good food in adequate supply remained constant. Now, in February, as they begin to lay more, we can start to think of more egg-rich dishes. The supermarket supply of eggs being constant year-round, we have forgotten the seasonal nature of a hen. We could have added artificial light, but took the advice of an experienced organic egg farmer and gave the girls a rest.

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