High egg prices leading people to rent chickens, FOX 26 photographer starts chicken coop

A carton of eggs now costs 70 percent more than it did a year ago, but that is keeping a Central Texas business called Rent-the-Chicken busy, with more people wanting to rent their own chickens.

So we at FOX 26 decided to take a crack at it.

Rent-the-Chicken is letting us have two chickens, we've named Barbara and Carol, for a month. The red hens getting used to their new digs, at the home of our photojournalist Chandler Watson.

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"Isn’t it better up here? It's warmer, you get to see more," Watson asked the chicken he was holding.

Rent-the-Chicken is what Texas operator Homestead Des calls chickens without the commitment.

"The phone is ringing off the hook. Everybody wants chickens. We make it easy," said Des.

For about $600 for six months, Rent-the-Chicken provides the coop, feed, and a treat made of fly larvae. Apparently, chickens love it.

Des sends a book on chicken raising, and taught us how to care for, and even hold a chicken.

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"It’s the classic football hold. You want to tuck in the wings and grab the feet, so they're nice and tight," Des showed us.  

Together, Des says Carol and Barbara will lay about a dozen eggs a week.

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We quickly learned Barbara's personality is sweet, while Carol is ‘egg-ceptional’, a little feisty. In fact, we have a lot to learn about corralling Carol.

But Des says most renters decide to adopt their chickens.

"They usually have no ideas that chickens will bring them so much joy," said Des.

You can follow the adventures of Carol and Barbara on our website, FOX 26 social media pages, along with Chandler's Coop Cam.