We know you think backyard chickens are hot, because we've been rifling through your trash and we found those back issues of Grit. Now there's a shortcut to realizing your dream of owning little tiny feathered dinosaurs that lay unfertilized breakfast bombs for you: Hire a chicken consultant.

Reader support helps sustain our work. Donate today to keep our climate news free. All donations DOUBLED!

For a fee, Jennifer Murtoff will come to your house and help you set up your own little Chickentopia. Speaking as someone who baby-sat chickens for three months this summer, I can tell you that it's a hell of a lot easier to learn the craft from someone else than to try to figure it out on your own, so if you live in Chi-town (that’s Chicago, not Chickentown), you should totally hire her.

With Murtoff’s help, you could be on your way to eggs that are extra-delicious and guaranteed cruelty free unless you are an asshole. And while there's little evidence that eggs from your own chickens will save you money over the factory kind, Murtoff has the feeling that part of what's driving her business is the recession.

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.

“And I think it’s the economy,” Murtoff says. “Seriously, with people losing jobs, it’s nice to have a bird in your backyard that can give you breakfast. I think that’s part of it. And we’re starting to wake up to what’s going on with our food system.”