MORRIS COUNTY, N.J. (PIX11) – You might not ever figure out whether the chicken or the egg came first, but it doesn’t take a philosopher to see the price of eggs has flown the coop.

“Now with the price of eggs, having your own guaranteed eggs in your backyard is great,” said chicken farmer Marlena Schilke. 

One solution people are turning to? Renting chickens.

Rent The Chicken is a nationwide company, with affiliates all over the United States and Canada. 

Schilke is the Northern New Jersey affiliate.

It starts with a call to the company. From there, you get set up with your local affiliate. Packages with everything you need to care for the birds start around $600 for the season, which begins in April and goes through October.

“You don’t have to start with chicks and raise them up and then find out they are roosters and have to get rid of them,” said Schilke. “This way, you’re guaranteed hens. You get two to four and see if you can handle it, if you like it, if your neighbors don’t mind you having chickens. For whatever reason you want to quit, we just take the coop and the chickens back.”

When all is said and done, is it cost effective for you to rent the chickens rather than just get the eggs from the store? That’s only for you to decide, but farmers say there are a lot more benefits to having a chicken than just getting the eggs.

“They kind of scratch around, pick up weeds,” said Schilke. “Some people use it to do a little early tilling on their garden. Chickens are beneficial for a lot of things.”

If nothing else, she says it can make for a fun memory for your kids.

“You see pictures of the kids, they send us thank-you cards,” said Schilke. “They send us pictures of the kids holding when they get the first egg, and they’re all excited.”