MONTAGUE, Mich. — On an overcast Tuesday afternoon, co-owner of Happy Acres Farm Leslie Bond Strychar is inside of her chicken coops.
As she names each one of her many chickens by name, it's clear she has a lot of love for them.
So much love, the Montague farmer is partnering with Traverse City-based Rent-A-Chicken this summer.
"It is exactly what it sounds like. You get to rent a pair of laying hens, you get the equipment, we set up, we tear down, we bring the food, we bring the hens, you get all the experience, as little or as much as you want,” Strychar said.
The peckish little birds could indeed be yours for the summer if you live between Whitehall and Grand Rapids.
"It’s an introduction," says Strychar."It’s a set price for the whole season, and if you decide it’s not for you, we’ll come get them after a week!"
You will need a yard, but the equipment and food will be taken care of.
All you have to do is maintain and reap the rewards: fresh eggs.
"On average, you’re looking at about a dozen a week once they’re settled and they’ve calmed down, and they know where they are,” Strychar said. “They’ll stress out for a bit and say, ‘Where’s my mom?’ But once they know that they’re home, about a dozen a week."
It is indeed, an “egg-cellent” plan.
Chickens for the summer, and a learning experience to keep for a lifetime.
"Seeing what kind of work is involved in maintaining something that gives back to you in all kinds of ways,” Strychar said. “I mean even if you don’t like the eggs, they are great fertilizer, all kinds of benefits from them."
Rent-A-Chicken will check with your local ordinances for you to make sure that you’re able to have chickens where you live. For more information, visit their website.