Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Barbara the Weather Chicken

Anyone who works outdoors quickly develops an obsession with the weather. This is particularly true if you live on an island like England with its changeable island climate. Large land masses like the US mean more predictable weather patterns, and the systems stay in place longer. One sunny day is usually followed by a few more. Here we get sun, rain, sleet, and snow all in a day. And this time of year, it feels like a predominance of rain and miserly amounts of sun.

Anyhoo, the BBC is our usual provider for weather reports. But we have since found another source - Barbara our silkie hen. She doesn't so much predict the weather as embody it. She is a testament to what the day's been like weather-wise. Here's 'dry and sunny day' Barbara:

And here's Barbara letting us know it's been a wet and wintry day:

So we've got a chicken that can tell the weather. Now, if only I can teach one of the dogs to read Tarot cards, we could take this show on the road.


  1. I have a dog that does muddy or not muddy predictions.

    I now have short hair!!! Could have spun a jumper with what I left on the hairdressers floor!!

  2. Here in Northern California, we depend on the advice of Bernadette The Weather Duck®. Well, perhaps depend is a bit too strong of a word. But she is entertaining.

    Here's her Facebook page -

  3. Colette - Can't wait to see the new hair, knitting group is coming up...

    Patti - A duck would seem more suited to weather prediction somehow. And Bernadette is great name! Thanks for the link.

  4. In the grand tradition of Clever Hans, the horse who counts!

    We picked our chicken breeds for their cold-hardiness, and I envy you your silly silkie. I want a poofy chicken who tells the weather.

  5. Tamar - My aunt who was a national champion breeder and show-er of chickens (it must be genetic) suggests a Cochin - poofy yet cold hardy, at least compared to the silkie.

  6. William Cobbett warns against letting your hens out in the rain, but ours get very indignant if we follow his advice. It is so wet here even the pigs didn't want to come out this morning. I, being a petal, am sitting inside, I would like to say, in the warm, but less cold is probably more truthful!

    Pomona x

  7. Pomona - That goes double for silkies, but ours seems to be immune to the rain (or she hasn't read Wm Cobbett). If the dogs and pigs have enough sense to stay inside, I think we should follow their lead.