Remscheid Two years ago, Britta Kronoge fulfilled her dream of owning her own chickens. Since then, she has also been on the road with her chicken cell phone.
Necessity is the mother of invention. If you really want to draw a positive conclusion from the Corona pandemic and its effects, a lot of people who have a lot more time have been thinking about alternatives. Most important, of course, is when the extra time is combined with the fact that you can only practice your actual work to a limited extent or not at all. For example Britta Cronauge from Lüttringhausen. “I’m an actress and I work in a touring theater in Wuppertal – for about two years now all appointments have been canceled,” says the 47-year-old. And suddenly the actress and drama teacher felt like many of her classmates. “But sitting and doing nothing is none of my business,” she says.
Then the St. Franciscus Catholic Primary School in Lauteringhausen asked her if she wanted to do something about afternoon care nutrition. “I often have smaller events there, so I said yes right away,” says Britta Kronog. In May 2020, she then went to the kindergarten with a few of her chickens and told them about “chickens and eggs” and brought the feathered animals closer to the children.
“Chicken is my favorite thing, I’ve always been fascinated by them, and for my 45th birthday, I fulfilled my dream of having my own chickens,” she says. What started with three chickens soon became 16 animals, which now roam the spacious garden behind the family home.
The feathered visit to the kindergarten is a complete success. “So – and because there was no real relaxation in the Corona case – I then started taking the whole thing to a more professional level,” says the 47-year-old. Flyers were created, Corona funding was applied for from the city and state and a one-man play was written. “In it I say a lot about animals, and above all made it clear that the supposed ‘dumb hen’ is not stupid at all. On the contrary, chickens are very intelligent animals,” says Britta Kronog.
In the play, she illustrated this by placing a small chicken on a Duplo plate. “Then I tell the kids: The hen likes that much space. Then I take out the real chicken and put it on the duplo plate as well—that’s how much space the hen has on the factory farm,” she says. This is always impressive in the end, every child will receive a feather or poster from animal welfare organizations. “This is very important to me, and I always point it out,” says the 47-year-old.
The love of feathered animals has been with me for many years. “I know this from my uncle – and also from my husband’s family Thomas. Good two years ago I bought myself chickens. The effort is very limited, the animals mostly keep busy, you just have to feed them. ” But she also loves to be with chickens. “There’s something almost meditative about watching them go about their day,” she says.
In the two Corona years, when she naturally spent more time at home, she could closely monitor the animals’ annual cycle. “My youngest son is very excited too. He is eight years old now and he wants to be a farmer later,” Britta Kronoge says with a laugh. If the boy is not found, she will just have to search the stable. “You can always find it there.”
Thanks to her chicken cell phone, Britta Kronog has been a guest at kindergarten and seniors facilities for nearly two years. “It’s word of mouth, I don’t advertise it often, it just works really well on its own,” she says. In addition to the chickens – “I always go on dates with two animals, they really enjoy doing it” – they also have their own information game, which is interactively organized, in their luggage. “There should be a maximum of ten children, otherwise it would be too worrying for the chicken. That is why I often do it twice in a row,” says Britta Kronog. The animals are sure to enjoy it, even if they have already chosen which one is right for them. “Chickens have personalities. You have to know them to decide which ones can do that and which ones are more shy.”