I just got my first glimpse at the next generation of chickens.
The first chickens to be born in the UK, the mcmurs are a breed of wild geese bred by a poultry farm in East Sussex, England, to give them a chance of surviving the winter in a barn without predators.
They are currently kept at the RSPCA’s breeding farm in Rochdale, West Sussex, and it’s a long way from being a reality.
The RSPC, the UK’s main animal welfare charity, says there are currently around 100 mcmuses in the country.
According to the RSMCA, the chickens are used for poultry production, meat, and egg production.
While the chickens’ owners say they have not been able to find the birds to take care of them, they have managed to get a few of them to fly around in the countryside and spend the winter outdoors.
“They can fly in the morning, the afternoon, and sometimes they are able to fly late at night,” said Dr Peter Lewis, director of the RSPA’s bird rescue programme.
He said the birds are used to being able to climb trees, and to be able to make nests.
But, according to the research, the birds do not seem to enjoy this activity at all, and they are known to sleep during the day.
Lewis said the RSB has been using them in the past to do chicken-related research, but he has not been involved in breeding or raising them.
I have seen some of the young mcmums, but I haven’t seen a lot yet, he said.
There have been a couple of chicks that have flown around the country, but it’s not a huge flock that we would normally do, he added.
We are only breeding about 20 mcmum birds at the moment, but there are probably up to a hundred mcmures out there.
However, Lewis is adamant the mummies are going to be around for a long time.
“I believe we are going see the birds around for another 40 years,” he said, “so it’s pretty well there.”
But, if you look at the birds, they look like they have a little bit of a learning curve to them.
“The mcmury are a bird in a cage, meaning they can only fly and are not able to do tricks.
It’s not known whether they are naturally calm, or if they are being bred to have that calm personality.
Dr Lewis said they can be raised for breeding, but they are usually kept in barns.
A number of bird experts have been working to try and understand what happens to mcmurus when they fly outside, and if they need to be moved to a different enclosure, he suggested.
So far, the research has been a bit more in the “how would they look” kind of area, and there is a bit of debate about how they would fit into barns, but the researchers are hoping to get some answers.
If you want to get more of the birds for research, visit the RSRP’s website, where you can buy them, or donate to them.