Tuesday, March 12, 2013

broody hens

you couldn't tell it by looking outside, where snow is softly falling as we "speak," but there are signs of spring around here. this morning, these three little fellas (they'd better be girls) greeted me when i peeked in to check on their mama, who has been nesting in an odd spot away from the coop. i wasn't sure when she began, but thought she must be getting close. there are two more eggs in the nest, but i think they're duds. i wish i could reach them to take them out of there, but she's found such a weird place, i can only reach her with my camera lens. it's funny, if you google how to handle letting your chickens hatch out their eggs, you'll be led to believe it's impossible. we have definitely learned otherwise. last year, we started with 12 chickens and now we've got 30 (33 if you count these new ones). nature is pretty cool.

and this little hen, with the fetching straw on her head, is also in an odd spot away from the coop in another building. she was off her nest when i checked this morning and i found out she's working on hatching out TWENTY eggs. she must have had some help laying those, as i sincerely doubt she did it herself.  those other hens are clever, getting her to do all the work.

late this afternoon when i was feeding the horses, i found another hen hunkered down out in the horse barn. that's what you get when you have free range chickens, you never know where you'll find them.

last year, the broody hens drove me nuts, as it stopped the egg laying, but i'm getting up to ten a day right now and we can't keep up anyway (i've been giving eggs to everyone who comes by and took some to my friends at the library as well), so i'm just charmed by it. hens are so funny - they have a wide vocabulary and i just get a big kick out of them. so much more so than i ever thought i would. and these broody hens and their little chicks make me think spring must be on its way. right?

No comments: