A week ago we noticed that Marge wasn’t loudly complaining. That should have had us worried. A few days ago, Steve noticed that Marge was having a hard time hopping up and out of the pop-hole door. I thought that she was just getting old and stiff. But today she died. (I will post more, maybe next week, about this.)

Marge came to Little Pond Farm in the fall of 2004. A friend in town bought the “rainbow layer” assortment from Murray McMurray. Twenty-five were too many for her. She sold half for $4 each, and gave the money to Heifer International. We took six. It turned out that two were New Hampshire Reds – Marge and Petunia.

For the last 5 1/2 years, Marge has been a loud presence in our backyard. She was a sturdy, basic brown hen, but there was nothing plain about her personality. She talked. She told you what she thought – which was usually in the lines of, “more bugs!” and “that’s for me!” and “pay attention!” and, “bring it here!” She also announced when she was going into the coop and when she was leaving. For a few years, she laid eggs every day, and she let us know that she had done her job, very well thank-you, and she should have a reward for it. Lately she hadn’t been laying, but she said she still deserved her reward, and we agreed.

It’s going to be a lot quieter here without her. Petunia will miss her, and so will I.


  1. So very sorry for your loss. Chicken death is so very hard.

  2. Glad for all the years of Chicken joy she brought to your flock. We do love our talkative hens, and surely she will be missed. Blessings.

  3. Oh Terry I am so sorry for your loss of dear Marge…….
    On a brighter note, so glad Candy is doing better.

  4. I have 11 chickens. I lost my little Coshin last fall, and I do not know why. I still miss her little fluffy ankles, and all the fuss she made. Chickens have a lot of charm. Sorry for your loss.

  5. Would have loved to have heard all her exclamations. Thank you for sharing her with us. Sorry.

  6. So sorry to hear about our loss of Marge. The outgoing and talkative ones always make the biggest impression on us. She’s happy and safe in chicken heaven with all our friends.

  7. Just caught this news on facebook and responded there. Marge found you, you loved and cared for her, she was clearly grateful, but now you bear the hardest part. As chickens are so wise, Petunia will understand and roll with this more easily than we humans will. There’s so much to learn from them and so little time.

  8. So sorry Terry – it’s lovely that you got to know Marge and she became part of your routine too. You’ll miss her chatting but know you gave her the happiest life a hen could wish for.


  9. So sorry to hear this; they leave a disproportionately big hole for such a little animal. Do you have a recording of her yelling? I have some of Minnie and it always makes me smile. Hope you and Petunia can keep yourselves occupied today – a little weeding perhaps?

  10. I’m sorry for your loss … but she was happy with you.

  11. Terry
    My aide and I will miss Marge greatly. Though we were not able to hear her, it was a joy to watch her strut her stuff. Rest in peace Marge.

  12. Terry, Is that a picture of Marge on your blog about hen talk? She will be missed….Thinking of you today!

  13. I’m so sorry for your loss, Terry. She was as well-loved as a hen could ever be. Thank you for sharing her demanding, complaining and endearing life with all of us. She will be missed.

  14. Such sad news. She was a lucky hen to have found you and the rest of the girls.

  15. We will all miss Marge. Your narratives Terry have made her seem like our feathered friend too. I’m sure that in Poultry Paradise Marge is busy right now clucking away with Snowball, Ginger, Eggers, et. al. about all of the latest going-ons at Little Pond Farm.

  16. So sorry to hear about Marge. She was a beautiful girl!

  17. Awww…I’m sorry about Marge. I have a hen, Rosie, who talks all the time like that, too, and she’s quite a character. Poor Marge. :(

  18. Hi Terry, I have not read your blog for about a week now and when I read it tonight it was so sad that Marge had died, on my Birthday too.
    I love watching your girls, I will be getting mine very soon.
    Thanks for sharing the stories with us, love watching the cam.

    Warmest Regards

    Ann-Marie Australia

    • I’m glad to hear you’ve rebuilt and are ready for your chooks. What breeds are you getting? You have some interesting hybrids in Australia that we don’t have here.

  19. Terry, I’m so very sorry to hear your said news. All of my hens are getting old now too, my youngest is 6 yrs old. It’s just never easy to have to say goodbye to them. I have enjoyed watching your Marge for several years now and I’ll miss seeing her. Deepest sympathies on her passing.

    Lynn, in Washington state
    I still enjoy wearing my Hencam ball cap every day.