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State

Chickens winging it at Illinois governor's mansion

Chickens walk inside their fenced-in enclosure at the Illinois governor's mansion.
Chickens walk inside their fenced-in enclosure at the Illinois governor's mansion.

SPRINGFIELD – Things are getting a little fowl at the Illinois governor's mansion.

A flock of eight clucking hens has moved onto Executive Mansion property, laying eggs that are eaten by guests dining at the home in downtown Springfield.

The chickens peck at flowers, recycle plant waste and provide manure for the gardens. They live in a donated coop that's inside a fenced-in enclosure and are part of an ongoing sustainability effort championed by Gov. Pat Quinn.

Backyard chickens are legal in Springfield and several other Illinois communities. They've become increasing popular as part of a local food movement.

The Springfield bureau of Lee Enterprises reports (http://bit.ly/1j9uchW ) the chickens typically lay an egg a day, which is often scrambled with cream by mansion staff.

The poultry was rescued from a nearby farm.

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