Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Secret Egg Stash!

After moving our chicken tractor on Saturday and the ensuing pandemonium required to get them in the past couple of nights, Farmer John and I figured the chickens were a bit stressed and not laying eggs.

Of course last time we thought that we found a secret stash a couple of days later.

Deja Vu!

I just happened to see a chicken sitting in a very hidden place under some bushes.  When I went to go inspect it further thinking this was Divergent's hiding place I was surprised to find another secret stash filled with eggs.

Clearly the chickens were not stressed.  They just didn't want to lay their eggs in the chicken tractor.

The nest was so tiny and so far back in the bushes that I had to get my nine year-old daughter to crawl in to fetch the eggs.

Of course since so many eggs had been lain there a couple had been stepped on and cracked open. Reagan, though, was a trooper and retrieved all the good ones even though they were quite dirty.  The hens all looked on, quite curious as to what we might be doing there.

We pulled a dozen eggs from that spot.

I usually don't wash my eggs but these got washed.  I also floated them to make sure they were fresh. They were.  I candled them with a flashlight too, just to make sure that nothing was developing.
My four year-old watched each step with unwavering eyes.  She loves collecting eggs and wanted to learn more.
Today when we went out to collect eggs we checked the stash area but there was nothing there.  There were however eggs in the nesting boxes in the chicken tractor.  I can't figure out these birds for nothing.  I think they're messing with me.
Update on Divergent Hen:  I found her hiding place and it wasn't the above egg nest.  As I was putting in hens last night  (We only needed to help one beside Divergent in.) I watched her slowly saunter away around to the front of the house.  She had disappeared by the time( a couple of minutes later) I could go for her but I looked for her and I just happened to see her in one of our trees... but she wasn't on a thick branch near the trunk. She was up and out on a very tiny branch near the outside of the tree.  I know that was not were I had looked the nights before.
I was able to coax her down from the tree and then I caught her and carried her to the tractor.  She went calmly as if she was happy that I had found her.  I hope she goes to the tractor tonight. I would prefer her not to be divergent.

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