Gender bender

WE KNOW that there is all this stuff going on at the moment about what does it matter what gender you are, so a wee story from last weekend's LiveScot event might put things in perspective.

Margaret Gray, the event's organiser par excellence, decided to help entries along by putting a wee chook into the poultry show – which, by the way, is becoming a significant, if noisy, attraction.

However, much to her surprise and, we suspect, that of the judges, the wee cockerel she had entered had one of those gender neutral moments rudely interrupted by the fact that it laid an egg.

This brings a whole new dimension to the 'what came first' question ...

Yolks on Emma

WE reckon though, that Margaret's hen/rooster – not sure what to call it – pales into insignificance with a hen that laid a four-yolk egg in Guernsey.

Farmer's wife, Emma Brooks, of Castel Farm, was amazed when she cracked open a regular, albeit slightly larger than usual, egg to pair with her husband Steve's ham and chips for tea one evening.

And out popped four yolks. With the odds of getting a double yolker about 1000 to one, Mrs Brooks' husband, Steve – who has a flock of 16,000 free-range hens – has since found out that the odds of getting a four-yolker is about 11bn to one.

That means at currently production levels from Sir John Campbell's Glenrath operation of 1m eggs a day, that one could be found in Scotland soon. Or maybe not!

Choirs star at Carnegie Hall

THE FARMERS' Wives and Farmers' choirs just go from strength to strength and last weekend they excelled themselves by going over to the 'dark side' – ie, the Kingdom of Fife!

Apparently, in all the years the choir has been going – it started in 2013 – there has never been anyone from Fife in either of the choirs. So it was excellent that the good people of the Kingdom gave the choirs a right Royal welcome.

From the stage, one of the choir, Kelvin Frew, gave a heartfelt plea for people to become aware of the many mental health issues that plague modern society, and especially farmers. He's an award winning mental health nurse that qualifies for being in the choir 'because I lives next to a farm'.

And on health topics, everyone also sent their best to Keith Henderson, a Dumfries-shire member of the choir and its very funny compere who was seriously hurt recently in an accident on the farm. He'll be glad to find out that his efforts for the choirs have helped raise more than £31,000 for some great charities over the years – and that his stand-in replacement as compere, Malcolm Coubrough, didn't steal any of his jokes!

Last weekend's concert's takings were split between three of the choirs' favourites plus money for RHET Fife. The concert was in Dunfermline and now all the choir members can say they played Carnegie Hall – they don't need to tell anyone it was the Dunfermline one and not in New York!

Mutton dressed as ... a carrot

WE'VE all heard of the phrase 'mutton dressed as lamb' but now the anti-meat eating brigade have really taken the biscuit!

The new landlady of the 'Shoulder of Mutton' pub in York has decided to rename the hostelry as the Heworth Inn on the grounds that the former name is not a great attraction for tourists. she has also made up the new menu with a third of vegetarian dishes

It might be worth reminding the landlady, Leah Stannard, that vegetarians still only make up less than 5% of the population and the rest of us would probably relish a tasty shoulder of mutton.

One place I won't be going to then!