I remember my first year as a minister in my third parish. It was Easter and the local chicken farm offered me one day old chickens to have in the church on Easter Sunday morning. The children loved it.
When I went to return the chickens later that day I was told that they would be killed because they could not return them to the others. They might have picked up some disease.
So my venture with hens and chickens began. Some months later I had forty hens some of them rare breeds. I also had some bantam hens that brought much pleasure.
I remember having a hen that was sitting on a clutch of eggs but she abandoned them. I brought them into the house and rigged up a heat lamp to keep them going.
Fortunately, a local farmer I was friendly with told me that when they started to break out to leave them to do this no matter how much I might want to help them in their struggle.
I also learned something else from this about nature when I heard about the young lad who had found a cocoon . He had found it at the side of the path attached to a broken twig. He had carefully carried it home and put it safely on the mantle shelf in a jar with plenty of holes in the lid.
The boy watched, as he studied the silky envelope. Almost imperceptibly at first, the cocoon moved. He watched more closely and soon the cocoon was trembling with activity. Nothing else happened. The cocoon remained tightly glued to the twig and there was no sign of wings.