Police heat detection equipment, according to one U.K. chicken farmer, has a hard time distinguishing between a hatchery and a hash farm, and he and his birds have been paying the price.

Eddie Lovett, from Renfrewshire, had his farm raided by the police in October after, he believes, a police helicopter detected large amounts of heat coming from his buildings.

Feeling the heat

Speaking to the Daily Record, he explained that he had a hatchery which meant that his sheds were “nice and warm.”

“There’s an incubator that runs at just under 100 degrees Fahrenheit. But it seems that the police don’t have the common sense or brains to work out that incubators and chickens go together,” he said.

Officers of the law and sniffer dogs swooped on the farm in the middle of last month, their second visit in 12 months, but found no evidence of criminal activity at the farm. The dogs charging about upset the chickens and Mr. Lovett, who is now understandably a little hot under the collar, is claiming police harassment.

Making a hash of chicken imports

The justice system has been more on target further south in the UK.  

A former policeman and a retired meat dealer were found guilty of possessing cannabis resin worth more than GBP267,000 (US$406,000) after a court heard how the smell of rotting chicken led to their arrest.

Michael Kinkaid and Anthony Wright were found to have 267 kilograms of the drug at an industrial unit after it had been smuggled from Spain in frozen chicken. However, the pair failed to properly clean the jewel in their chicken crowns, leaving chicken residues on the packs that then began to rot.

The smell became so appalling that neighboring business contacted the police with concerns that there might have been a rotting body in the unit, the Echo reports. Yet to be sentenced, the pair are facing custodial sentences later this month.

This latest prosecution comes after the trial of a Devon farmer, Edward James, who was found guilty earlier this year of having a cannabis crop on his poultry farm with a value of GBP109,000.

While chicken meat is widely seen as being good for the health, and cannabis is increasingly seen as having medicinal benefits, the latest instances of chicken and cannabis production are not thought to be evidence of a new trend in parallel cropping.