This afternoon I was out cleaning out the chicken house...you know, that ultra romantic chore of scraping up chicken poop that everyone includes in their idyllic imagining of having chickens...anyways. I happened to notice our mama Australop hanging out in the bushes and as I turned to look, I finally found it, the missing egg stash! A few of my fellow chicken farmers and friends have blogged lately about such events happening at their house also so I knew I just had to share too! [caption id="attachment_1136" align="alignright" width="224" caption="Hiding out in the grass"][/caption]
I knew it was only a matter of time until I would find where the hens had been laying, but this spot is one that I had searched in multiple times in the past week or so and totally missed. Our daily egg total had gone down significantly and this is why!
But the story doesn't end there, I am just getting to the exciting part. Mama Australop decide today that her setting was ready and so she is now brooding on those eggs! This means chicks (we have two roosters) in about 20 or so days. They will be an assortment of our chickens because they are from the various hens. By the end of the day she had all of those eggs tucked under herself with her half grown chick still chirping close by. As I finished my romantic task, I was struck by the thought that this is how food should be raised. That I can feed my family this way.
As I finished up cleaning, one of the other hens wandered up to Mama Australop to check out what was happening. She literally growled long and low for them to back off. I understand the feeling and as I grow the little one within, I felt an odd connection with this mama chicken. I am glad though that I can move around while growing this wee one!