Trish & Shaniqua: Backyard Poultry

Welcome, readers, to the first entry in the weekly chicken log (chlog) known as "Trish & Shaniqua: Backyard Poultry." Trish and Shaniqua are two single hens who recently moved into a small one-room coup in a back yard on Northeast Couch Street. Though born at a feed store in Gresham, they consider themselves "city gals."

Trish describes herself as independent despite her lack of flying capability, and sassy but sweet. She’s a self-professed nerd who can talk football as well as incubation methods. Her interests include clucking with friends, smearing her bird ass in the mud, laying sickly dwarf eggs and eating in.

Shaniqua calls herself fiercely loyal and rambunctious, though she admits that can sometimes be a turn off to more passive roosters. She sees nothing wrong with being a motivated chicken in a cock’s world. Her motto is "leave no dirt patch unscratchethed."

Though they’re not actually related and they fall on completely opposite sides of the color palette, the two girls consider themselves sisters. Trish finishes Shaniqua’s cluckings and Shaniqua completes Trish’s (jinx!). Their chlog is intended to give folks an insider’s perspective of what it’s like to live as an urban chicken in the wake of 9/11.

Monday, Feb. 28:

Trish and Shaniqua awoke this morning to freshly delivered earthworms specially hand-raked from the fertile gutters of Couch Street. Upon the worms’ arrival Trish immediately erupted into a dizzying tailspin about the coup with a slimy micro-beast firmly clasped in her beak. Shaniqua, meanwhile, minded her manners, carefully slicing the delicacy into economic portions, chewing carefully as to savor the taste. After breakfast it’s time to get to work. The girls’ favorite activity is their daily yard exercise. They cluck about and explore the woodpile, continuously hoping to find the highest point of elevation before the other; a sort of cat and mouse game, the queen of the hill. ‘Tis their nature, after all, to squat at the highest point of their surrounding quarters. Then it’s back in the coup for a full day’s roost.

Life in the city isn’t always ideal for chickens or the folks around them. For instance, Trish and Shaniqua wake bright and early every day at sunrise, 6:30 a.m. Their expressive morning song threatens their stay on Couch Street. The upstairs landlord isn’t actually aware of their existence yet.

Will Trish and Shaniqua be permitted to stay? Can their keepers keep them quiet until a godlier hour? Visit us next week for more cluckin’ adventures of "Trish & Shaniqua: Backyard Poultry."