Retirees knitting sweaters for chilly chickens

MILTON, Massachusetts (AP) - Knitting sweaters for chickens sounds like a joke, but a plucky group of retirees in suburban Boston has hatched a plan to keep poultry warm during the New England winter.

The unusual project began after members of a knitting club at a retirement home in Milton, Massachusetts, heard about the hardships that some chickens suffer this time of year.

Certain breeds shed their feathers and grow new plumage in the winter months. Others imported from tropical climates just aren't suited for the wintry conditions.

Organizer Nancy Kearns says the project benefits chickens kept on a neighboring estate known as the Mary M.B. Wakefield Charitable Trust .

Estate spokeswoman Erica Max says egg production has jumped noticeably since the birds began wearing the sweaters.

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