Famous hens at St Pius X Primary School

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20 October 2016Image 1 - St Pius X students award winning poster at the Royal Melbourne Show. Image 2 - St Pius X students with their ribbon at the Royal Melbourne Show. Image 3 - St Pius X student caring for chicken.

For a number of years chickens have been a part of life at St Pius X Primary School, Heidelberg West, but 2016 will be remembered for being the year our hens became famous!

For the second year we entered the Royal Show Schools Poultry Competition. Each week from the day our six pullets (young hens) were delivered, the students weighed and monitored the amount of food consumed each week on average. When the chickens began laying in early August, data on the average number of eggs laid per week was also kept. On the final day of Term 3, four of the chickens (John Cena, Chatterbox, Pecky and Little Devil) were transported to the showgrounds to stay for the duration of the Show.

The competition consisted of three components: the flock is judged for their appearance, health, plumage and weight; the eggs are judged on their colour, shell and albumen; and a poster displaying all the data collected over the 12 weeks is the third part. Seven of the ‘Chicken Monitors’ travelled into the show to see the final judging during the holidays.

They were so excited to see that their poster won first prize, the flock won first prize and observed the eggs being judged first prize as well! The judges remarked on how well the flock was presented and in particular, how quiet they were. No doubt because of all the love and attention they receive each day by all students.

One of the four chickens, Chatterbox, was also named the Eggbassador for National Chook Health Day on 7 September. The Chook Monitors were interviewed and photographed by our local Leader newspaper (13 September) and their story featured on the early edition of Channel 9 News.

This is the summary the Monitors wrote for the poster:

We love caring for our chickens and check them every day for food and water. We get out every lunchtime to have fun with them, cuddle them, feed them and give them water. We love seeing that they lay eggs and we love collecting them and selling them from the school. 

This Sunday 23 October 11.30 am – 2.00 pm St Pius X Primary School will be opening their Community Environment Park (Stage 1) at 431 Waterdale Road, Heidelberg West. All are welcome to attend.