Meet Nancy Drew

I have six chickens, all of which hatched on March 29 at the Murray McMurray facility, and arrived here two days later. I’ve named them after favorite authors and book characters, and so I call them The Literary Ladies. I’ve introduced the other pullets to you in other blogposts; today is Nancy Drew’s turn.

Nancy Drew is a Black Star, which is a hybrid known as a sex-link, because at the time of hatch you can tell the boys from the girls by the color of their down. This means that you won’t get an unwanted roo in your order. Being a hybrid, the Black Star is a prolific layer. I had a Black Star a few years ago. Her name was Ginger and she was outgoing, friendly, curious and an all-around nice hen. Nancy Drew is a worthy successor.

I think that Black Stars are pretty birds, what with their glossy black back feathers and red bibs. They have upright combs and perfectly shaped wattles. Classic chickens!

Nancy Drew


Based on Ginger’s personality, I thought that Nancy Drew would be an appropriate name for a Black Star, and I was right. Nancy Drew is the first to investigate the rivets on my pants.



Doesn’t this face have the look of a detective?


Nancy Drew will be 20 weeks old this week. She’ll be laying brown eggs soon.


  1. The red on black is stunning. I love the combination. Can’t wait to see your assortment of egg colors when they all start laying. Hope all at Little Pond have a good day.

  2. She is a beauty! Hope you enjoyed your time off and we’re loving the new camera :)

  3. Lovely bird–never seen one of them before. I thought all chickens were nosy and quick to investigate :)

  4. My first five hens are closest in breed to “red stars.” They too are super curious to the point of walking up to strangers and turning their heads and staring up at them. They are the ones I raised in my kitchen, hand-carrying them outside to the pen every morning, and back again in the evening. I love their pointy and jiggly red head ornaments that rival a rooster’s and add color to the yard.

  5. Glad you posted Nancy Drew’s introduction today. I’ve been admiring her lately. I agree, black stars are pretty birds. She seems a very curious, friendly hen, and on the hen cam, the colouring of her feathers seemed understated. Looking at the photo above of her standing in the sun, however, her colouring really pops. Lovely girl.

  6. Ooooo they’re lovely – lovely hens, lovely photos – can I use the photos to paint from pretty please?? When I first got my first 5 hens I named them after the girls in Pride and Prejudice: Jane, Elizabeth, Lydia, Mary and Kitty, known collectively as the Miss Bennets. Then I got a (Miss) Charlotte (Lucas) and then a (Miss) Georgiana (Darcy), but then I ran out of names!!

    • One of the fun things about having a flock is naming them. Love “The Miss Bennets.” Of course you can paint Nancy Drew. I’m sure you’ll make her look as lovely as she is.

  7. Such a beautiful visage! Is it possible she could be a hen that goes with you when you visit schools?

    • I should have mentioned that! Yes, Nancy is the next school visit hen. In fact, she was greeted and pet by 60 preschoolers just last week. She’s independent enough to be happy to travel solo. She sits quietly in my lap. She is confident, yet calm, which is exactly what I look for. I was concerned that she might peck at the kids (they often wear sparkly shirts) but Nancy didn’t. She was perfect!

  8. What color toenails does Nancy Drew have? One of my Black Stars has black toenails, but pale ones on her middle toes!

  9. Sometimes “Wattles” are a very attractive trait! No investigation needed to know that about Nancy Drew.

  10. She looks like a mix between Blk Austrolop and Welsummer. Is that right?
    She’s so beautiful!

    • Black Stars are Rhode Island Red roosters crossed with Barred Rock hens, and visa versa.

  11. ahhh….I remember Ginger…but am trying to remember the name of the black Silkie bantam.

  12. LOL! The braincell comment cracked me up!
    Nancy Drew is beautiful. I hadn’t considered a Black Star as a choice for our future small flock, but now must re-think…

  13. I had no idea what the Black Star looked like! She is beautiful! I may try and add one to my flock in the future!
    Thanks again Terry!

  14. She’s a beauty! One of my first hens was a black star (Clementine), and she was a funny girl. I miss her.

    The other day, Nancy was sitting right in front of the camera so all I could see was her head, and she kept dozing off. She looked like a little kid who was struggling to stay awake because she didn’t want to miss something. Her eyes would slowly close, and her head would start to tilt, and then her beak would open a little bit like she was making a little snore and then she’d wake herself up. Clementine used to do that when she sat in my lap and I’d pet her back. Nancy was not-napping :-) for a good twenty minutes. She made me giggle – It was the cutest thing!

  15. We have Black Stars, too. They are great hens- sweet personalities and prolific layers of large beautiful eggs. Very dependable. Bombs away, Nancy Drew!

  16. Mon dieu! I have never seen a Black Star chicken before. What a gorgeous bird!! And lovely photos, too. Wow.
    So glad to know she has the right stuff for visiting the school kids. What a treat for them!!