Over there on the far left, you see a nest, made by one of our hens. There are more than 20 eggs there, and she carefully cleared that spot, laid those eggs, and then sat on them diligently until the non-farmer (that would be me) foolishly decided to bring her some food, and scared her off. That was a few days ago, and they're now abandoned. Before I toss them into the woods to be eaten by the foxes and raccoons, I wanted to memorialize her effort. Mostly, domesticated chickens don't do this. They have had the "broodiness" bred right out of them; their instincts are decidedly non-maternal. I could probably hatch some chicks from my hens; I know that many of their eggs are fertile (with three roosters around, that's no surprise) but I'd need an incubator to do it.
Meanwhile, the new girls have begun laying, too, bringing Dido's dreams of a roadside egg stand closer to reality. Their efforts are in that beautiful yellow bowl--I should have put one of the big girls' eggs in for scale, because these new ones are tiny--maybe an inch and a half long. As I did with the first from the original hens, I'll save these. Why, I don't know. Maybe they're like old pictures: reminders of the way things started out, the difficult promise held in every beginning.
Posted by Paige at 12:50 PM