Twiggy Eats… and Eats

There’s always one in a group – the string bean skinny, knee bouncing, always in constant motion, kid. He’s the sort that is constantly eating, but never puts on an ounce of weight. He burns right through the food as if it’s rocket fuel and he’s off to the moon.

Twiggy is that kid in my flock.



Have you ever seen her relaxing?

No. I didn’t think so.

She’s a White Leghorn, and she’s true to type. She’s sleek and full of curiosity and energy. She also lays eggs, and a lot of them. Even in her second year, she lays an astounding six eggs each week. Leghorns don’t go broody. She won’t take a break until she molts in the fall.



In order to make those eggs and keep moving at her leghorn clip, Twiggy needs to eat. She’s the first one at the feeder in the morning, she eats frequently during the day, and she makes sure that her crop is full before bedtime.



If I have to turn on the light after the hens have gone to roost in the dark, (which is what happens when Phoebe has decided to have a hop around instead of going to bed and I have to go back to the close up the coop on her schedule) the hens all murmur and shuffle at the sudden brightness. Not Twiggy. As soon as the light is turned on, she hops down and starts eating.

at feeder


Everyone finds this annoying, especially Phoebe who likes to have the floor to herself at night.



I, however, recognize what it takes to make those eggs, day after day, and I do appreciate Twiggy’s output. Besides, it’s simply fun to have a hen with such kinetic energy and a comb like this in the flock.

Twiggy portrait


  1. I got a white Leghorn chick this spring (along with 3 Delawares,) in honor of your Twiggy….she is also fun to watch and is friendlier than I expected…she is also a good eater, and forager. I was told that they are just egg machines and no fun to have in your flock, but I have found that she is a great addition to my flock and am considering another 2 next fall…thanks for giving me the inspiration to try the Leghorn…I have to add that I don’t have the desire some do to carry and hold the chickens, I just want to watch and enjoy…..

    • So glad you’re enjoying her! I don’t need to carry around and hug my chickens either – and they’re just as happy that I leave them be to go about their days. Just hanging out with them is the sort of companionable time that I enjoy.

  2. There is no doubt Twiggy is a beauty! I too as a fan of hers added a Leghorn to my flock….but he is a Bantam rooster. I have actually had him since early January, when he was just 5 mos old. I have really enjoyed watching him quickly become accepted as a part of an established group of hens….. first as an annoying youngin….and now as their male counterpart. Lucky Pecker took awhile to find his voice, his first attempts were pretty pathetic. He has no trouble at all now and actually quite enjoys the sound of his own voice. He very much appreciates having such a beautiful flock of standard sized hens all to himself. He is like the kid in the candy store. :) Although…. his favourite gal is the smallest, the Campine(Barbie). They make a cute couple.

  3. I think your Twiggy is a terrific bird – and I agree, Leghorns are fun to watch!
    I don’t have the desire to pick up and cuddle my chickens either, but like pulling up a stool to hang out with them. However, the down-side for me is that when I do need to pick them up, I have a difficult time catching most of them. Even my people-friendly Basque hen runs off when I try to pick her up now. I’m kicking myself for not keeping them used to being picked up, because I would like to be able to do a closer inspection to check for parasites and general health from time to time. The only one I can pick up easily is my broody Silkie when she’s in her broody trance in the nestbox. I think this is a good thing since I like to take her out to make sure that she takes time to eat, drink and do her business once a day.

    • Twiggy isn’t easy to catch! But my other hens all squat when I come near. If you do need to handle your birds, you can wait until dusk when they’re roosting. It’s easy to pick them up then.

      • Thanks, Terry good advice! I will do that – probably this weekend I will do a general health check when I move them into to the bigger coop that we just need to put the last predator and sqtouches on.

        • oops, hit “Submit Comment” too soon – that was supposed to read “… the last predator and squirrel/chipmunk proofing touches on”. :-)

  4. Because of Twiggy, I too was inspired to add a white Leghorn to my flock. Also a brown Leghorn and an Ancona! They are 11 weeks old now, can’t wait for those white eggs to start in another few months. I have noticed they are more skittish than my other breeds. They are a lot quicker too, I can’t catch them as easily. Have you noticed if Twiggy is more vocal or just generally makes more noise? I had heard that about Leghorns and have found it is true with the brown Leghorn and the Ancona.

  5. I was inspired by Betsy Ross to get my leghorn. Of course I didn’t realize Betsy was a smaller version until I already ordered. Somehow, I ended up with a leghorn the size in between Twiggy and Betsy. I guess they come in three sizes. Our leghorn is my husband’s favorite because she is so fast. Somehow I think the hens know when you really like them. She doesn’t pay a hoot of attention to me, but as sure as hubby goes to the coop, Dottie puts on a show of flying and running around run. She follows him step for step when he’s in the run or outside the run. Unlike Twiggy, our leghorn is very vocal. She has a much higher pitched sound than our other hens. Almost like singsong. I don’t know how you do it Terry, but our leghorn is never as white as yours. That’s one of the reasons I admire your hens so much. They look so clean and healthy. Five of ours look that way, but not Dottie and Chica. Seems Dottie just has to stay in the dirt. I do like picking my hens up, but do not hug them. I probably would, but I don’t like to have them close to my eyes. They have a wicked peck. None of ours show any aggression but when their curious, they peck. We do enjoy our hens. We enjoy your animals, also.

  6. My americauna turned out be an easter egger, I believe she is part brown leghorn from her coloring etc. she is very lightweight, eats like mad, lays consistently. She does not like to be held. I have some that hop willingly into my lap. Others let me pick them up to inspect them but aren’t into being hel long. So I let each bird dictate what they like best by their personality. My 2 belgian duccle like to be held. 1 will sit with me for a while. I don’t ave horses but am loving your posts. Very informative. I just love Twiggys comb. She looks like a big personality !

  7. Oh yes… as I type this there is Twiggy, head to the ground while the other ladies are looking around, now she has gone into the coop to get food out of the feeder! I LOVE that comb! Have a safe and happy Holiday!

  8. Love your blog. We are new to chickens. We got chicks in April and are learning lots. I stumbled upon your blog. It is so informative. Thank you for sharing all your stories!

    I noticed you don’t have a top on your hanging feeder. How do you keep your chickens from pooping in the feeder? we have a similiar feeder. We put a pie tin on top and I’m glad we did because there is definitely poop in the pan!