Well, I’ll be egg-bound. Not only have one of my babies started laying, they BOTH laid eggs this morning!
There are those occasionally raucous days of incessant squawking and overly hormonal bickering between the hens that tries one’s patience. Today was one of them. Hens in and out of the nesting boxes. Hens outside squawking and hollering because someone else is in the nesting box. Hens standing on my back porch steps yelling inside–really, literally, THROUGH the door, clearly directed at me–for God-knows-what. I go outside, flush them off the steps. Go back inside. Wonder why I ever decided to get four hens. Four LOUD hens. (Yes, the babies have found their voices.) a few minutes later, Goldie is out in the backyard BOK-BOK-BOKing at the top of her voice. I go back outside, grab the broom (anyone with chickens knows this is just about the only backyard implement you need on those unbearable days), chase her back into the coop with Marge and close the door. Now everyone is mad because they’re all closed-up. Go back inside and consider converting away from vegetarianism.
And then, a few moments later, silence. Blessed silence. I head back outside an hour later to release the Krakons from their cages. First, the babies–after a cursory look into the still-empty nesting box (even though Mabelene has been laying in there for over an hour). After they scuttle out, I let the big gals out of their run, and just as I walk back over to the back door, a gift on the ground: a perfect green egg, still wet from exiting Mabelene’s little fluffed-up body. The answer to yesterday’s question of who left the mystery eggs under the porch! Our little crippled-toe, emaciated-looking hen Mabelene! So I did what any mother would do: grabbed my camera and snatched up a shot (see below). So the divine Miss M is laying! Delightful. She just needs to work on her timing. And placement.
Not even an hour later, Marge is huddled up inside the nesting box. There is the unmistakable sound of an egg dropping to the box floor. Score! And before she can even waddle back into the yard to join Goldie on a bug hunt, Henrietta disappears into the box. Hm. Is she copying Marge, or even Mabelene? Jealous of Mabelene’s recent beautifully deposited green orb of deliciousness? I go about my business of drinking coffee and reading the Sunday paper. After Henrietta takes her leave, I head out to grab Marge’s egg from the box and–wonder of wonders–there’s a green egg right beside it! Henrietta, you sneaky little devil.
As I write this, Goldie is now taking her turn. When she drops hers and waddles outside to announce it to the world, it will be, finally, officially, a FOUR-egg day at the City Hen. My life is complete; haa.