Full name – I’m Barbie Q the Brahma.

Age – I think I’m about 4. I have just realized nobody has celebrated my Birthday!

My Role at Lancombe – Food Production Specialist/Entertainments

Background – I was born with a lot of other Chickens in Maiden Newton Village. I have been a member of the Lancombe Team since February 2014, when I relocated with other members of the original Lancombe Hen Party. I am the highest in the Hen Hierarchy, this is partly due to my size, but also because we have a history of being bullied by other Hens because they think we look like we’re stuck in the 70’s with our feathery flares, so we’re born thick-shelled.

This is me having a party with my Co-Hens. Bottoms up!

Why were you the best candidate for the role? – I am a fierce layer, and frankly I’m proud of both my laying productivity and the quality of my eggs. We are quite sociable and like it when children come to visit us, largely because we get extra helpings of food, but also, we are proud of what we deliver at Lancombe. As we live here for free with a housekeeping service, we’re happy to contribute to our housing and food.

I’m a fast runner! As Hens, we know every day is a lottery because it could be our last. There are so many dangers out there, that’s why we were happy to move to Lancombe, because we have Alpacas as neighbours which downgrades our risk of harm from critical to severe. Unfortunately, this is balanced by the fact we tend to roam in the woods…badgers build sets there and they are cunning too. We’re not scared of Dogs, if you’ve ever looked a Fox or a Badger in the eye, a cuddly Dog means nothing!

We’ve recently had some new friends move in, there are a couple that are small and odd looking too (some may say ‘cute’) and they gossip all the time, but we’ll soon peck that out of them. It’s a small, close knit Hen Hostel, and we don’t like everybody knowing our business. We had to have new friends because there’s been a high attrition rate lately, you see our Bosses rescued a lot of Hens from somewhere called a Battery, which sounds nasty. They were old, and even though I don’t know my birthday, you could tell they’d had the yolk knocked out of them. We’ll soon teach the newbies our pecking order, and hopefully they’ll pull their weight.

Interests – Staying alive! We have production targets, I tend to exceed these, but you can never be complacent. The best layer gets the best place in the shed at night because you gain a level of respect. Whilst we don’t always look it, we do love having children collect our eggs, there’s a certain amount of pride and satisfaction from making children smile, and otherwise, we don’t really get to see the output of our work.

Aspirations for the future – Staying alive! I’d ideally like to see next year, I love it at Lancombe and I know wonderful things are planned, so I want to live to see these materialize. I know if I was a Turkey, that wouldn’t happen! I want to continue to meet my targets and make children happy, I never realized I liked them so much, considering it seems with the lack of males here, I’ll never have any of my own!!

Hope to see you soon!

Love Barbie Q