scarce as hen's teeth

(as) scarce as hens' teeth

Incredibly scarce or rare; extremely difficult or impossible to find. Support for the candidate is as scarce as hens' teeth in this part of the country.
See also: scarce, teeth

*scarce as hen's teeth

 and scarcer than hen's teeth
Cliché scarce; seldom found. (*Also: as ~.) I do declare, decent people are as scarce as hen's teeth in these chaotic times. Handmade lace is scarcer than hen's teeth; most lace is made by machine.
See also: scarce, teeth

scarce as hen's teeth

Also, scarcer than hen's teeth. Exceptionally rare, as in On a rainy night, taxis are as scarce as hen's teeth. Since hens have no teeth, this term in effect says that something is so scarce as to be nonexistent. [Mid-1800s]
See also: scarce, teeth

(as) rare/scarce as hen’s ˈteeth

(old-fashioned) extremely rare: Critics always complain that good movies that the whole family can see together are as scarce as hen’s teeth.
This refers to the fact that hens do not have teeth.
See also: rare, scarce, teeth

scarce as hen's teeth

Nonexistent. Hens have no teeth, so what could possibly be scarcer? (Stones in their gizzards act as teeth to grind their food).
See also: scarce, teeth
References in classic literature ?
Whales are scarce as hen's teeth whenever thou art up here.
Limited to just 1500 units, you'll have to get a move on to secure one, for soon they'll be as scarce as hen's teeth.
I can assure Mr Bell that races of this type and grade are as scarce as hen's teeth, and such opportunities have to be taken where possible.
In publishing, African American men are as scarce as Hen's teeth, but a stalwart cadre are still making a difference.
But, because of restrictions in right-hand-drive production numbers, they are still as scarce as hen's teeth on UK roads - and in the showrooms.