14th December 2012
Good things come in small packages – meet Ginger.
Late one Summer’s evening, following the sound of noisy chirps, inquisitive and caring human ears were drawn to a tiny ball of yellow fluff beneath some bushes in a suburban backyard. How a tiny chick made its way to this most unlikely of resting spots will never be known and a door knock of neighbouring households shone little light. What did shine bright however, was the kindness of the human heart in wishing no harm upon the wee and innocent creature. And so the rescue of Ginger, the chirping chicken had begun.
So named after the heroine hen from ’Chicken Run’ the movie, Ginger has done what all hens yearn to do and that is to cheat their grisly fate that is predetermined by humans. Just like her namesake in the movie, young Ginger’s affable and forthright personality touches all she meets. Whilst many chickens may look the same, their personalities are as individual as yours and mine; something well known to all whose heart has been touched by a feathered friend. Ginger Chick has already made clear her likes and dislikes. Amongst her likes are grapes, warm places, trotting across Pam’s keyboard, singing happy chicken songs, perching on shoulders and pecking at unlistening ears. Luckily for Ginger her dislikes are few and short lived, one such example being when she is placed into her pet carrier at bedtime and for a short while cannot cozy up to the humans she has come to know.
When we look at this petite and vulnerable creature, it is hard to fathom how mankind could ever set out to wrong one so innocent. But sadly, we humans wrong the Gingers of this world far too often, using methods and reasons that are simply unfathomable to a kind heart. A male chick born into the egg industry is deemed to be of no economic value and is discarded at only one or two days old. Conservative estimates show that well over 12 million baby chicks, just like Ginger, are killed every year in Australia by this industry simply due being born male. The truth is, that for every egg laying hen existing within this industry, there is a tiny male version of Ginger who did not make it.
And while many may argue what came first, the chicken or the egg, one thing is for sure and that is the fate of sweet chicks like Ginger rests with the goodness of the human heart.