We are suburbanites with chickens. It's common in bigger towns, but not too many people in Knoxville have chickens in their back yards. Most natives think it's weird, like wanting a dirt floor or an outhouse.
The chickens started out as a science project for my first grader, and now they are more like pets, very messy pets that don't come inside and potentially carry a nasty disease. They are too young to lay eggs so not useful in any way, but they do amusing things like jump on each other and stretch and steal food. They also display some cautionary behaviors, like instead of eating a berry quietly, parading the prize around and taunting the others, which (if you don't know this already) generally makes your companions mad enough to maul.
Two weeks ago, though, we left our birds out to free range in the yard, and something nabbed our best chicken and killed another. The same day, my daughter witnessed a pervert being dragged out of the Tyson Park men's bathroom and arrested. A bad day for chickens and perverts.
Since then, some friends have given us two of their chickens. So now we have six again. And we've ordered a few more in the mail--they'll be here next week. Chickens are eminently replaceable.
Unfortunately, the perverts are probably back, too.