This year's annual Grow It Local Awards saw a strong contingent of entries from across the country, as the battle for Australia's Best Chicken Name once again raged.
From the funky to the punny, the lateral to the literal, and the avant-garde to the strictly sensible, this year's bird names had us all in stitches.
Our eminent judge, Dave Bowman — Head of Creative at Google and lover of puns (chicken-related and otherwise) — had such a tough time choosing the winner, that he ended up giving out NUMEROUS honourable mentions in this category.
So, let's take a look at the 2023 Grow It Local Awards champions in the category of Australia's Best Chicken Name...
WINNER - Meryl Cheep
Entered by @sashthomas_ from Adelaide, SA: "These gals have survived 2 weeks so I think it's safe to name them... welcome, Hilary Fluff, Hennifer Aniston and Meryl Cheep. Meryl has the RBF down pat, real Devil Wears Prada vibes. 💅"
Judge's comment: "After a rough start in life when her mum, the aptly-named 'Mother Clucker', rejected her and her siblings, Meryl Cheep is in fine form these days. Not afraid to strut her stuff with devil wears prada vibes, Meryl Cheep is one stylish bird. Big shout out to her siblings too, who almost took out the top prize with their equally fantastic monikers - 'Hennifer Aniston' and 'Hilary Fluff'.
RUNNER-UP - Chick Norris
Entered by @meghamfarms from Western Sydney, NSW: "These four fluffy butts have grown so much so quickly, and mumma Eggwina is doing such a good job! We have finally named the chicks in time for the @growitlocal's best chicken name competition! Introducing Chickira, Chick Norris, Chickpea, and Chick-eel O’neil. Aren’t they so cute 🐥 😍."
Judge's comment: "From 80's action hero to modern-day chicken-legend, Chick Norris has it all. That's one tough bird. And she'd need to be to outpace siblings with names like 'Chickira', 'Chickpea', and 'Chick-eel O’neil', all of which certainly deserve to be up in lights too."
There were soooo many great entries this year.
So, in no particular order, the bird names that almost made it (and certainly brought a smile to my dial during the judging were...
Hennifer Aniston & Hilary Fluff
Entered by @sashthomas_ from Adelaide, SA
Judge's comments: Topshelf puns from the same powerhouse team that took out the ultimate award this year, siblings of Meryl Cheep and offspring of Mother Cluckers, and proof that truth is stranger than fiction. Well done.
Chickira, Chickpea and Chick-eel O’neil
Entered by @meghamfarms from Western Sydney, NSW
Judge's comments: Strong contenders here, and a salute to popular culture of today and the sporting world of yesterday.
Julia Gizzard, Amanda Henstone, Natasha Crop Destroyer, Cheryl Cluck-o and Maxine McFlew
Entered by Kim Poh Urquhart
Judge's comments: A strong politically-themed entry here, with a few absolute crackers. Definite contenders.
Entered by Hillsdale Farm Mudgee
Judge's comments: Simple, but punchy. One for the Star Wars fans out there.
Entered by @feed.em.and.reap
Judge's comments: Love this. A simple twist on a regular name, that says exactly what it does on the tin.
Entered by Sally Westbury
Judge's comments: For the aspiring authors out there.
Entered by @herechookchook
Judge's comments: A great name and certainly one of the prettiest looking chickens we saw this year.
So, well done to all who entered. It's great to see home growers taking such pride in their epic output.
Head here to see all the winners across our full eight Grow It Local Awards categories.
We can't wait to see where things head next year.
The 2023 Grow It Local Awards were proudly supported by Seasol.