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Broody Hen

March 17, 2010

Today when I arrived home from work, I had only two chickens in the yard in lieu of our three. I panicked and like a mother, immediately my mind went to The Bad Place: “Did a raccoon get her? Did she hop the fence into the neighbor’s yard with the huge black dogs? Is she dead somewhere?”

I wandered the yard after checking the coop. No chicken, only one blue egg. We hadn’t a brown egg in weeks, so the sole egg was not a surprise. I asked the other neighbors’ kids if they had seen our bird. The kids gamely pointed out the other two hens pecking about the yard, “There’s one!” Not Madeleine, the missing one.

Then, I remembered the other day she had run up the hill to underneath the shed’s stoop. Behind a forgotten can, she had crouched. I had done a cursory look under there, but when I couldn’t find her anywhere else I looked again. And there was the merest silhouette of her beak and crown. I grabbed a long piece of plywood and poked it back to scare her out.


She hollered and crowed for a good fifteen minutes after emerging from her nesting spot. And what a nesting spot at that – I uncovered 7 eggs in her little nest under that stoop.


3 Comments leave one →
  1. Leigh permalink
    March 17, 2010 9:01 pm

    I am researching the solution for a broody hen. Will let you know what I find out.

  2. Fred permalink
    March 18, 2010 8:19 am

    What a jerk of a chicken, holdin’ out her eggs from you! Doesn’t she realize that the both of you are entered into an agreement: Room and board in exchange for delicious eggs?

  3. March 18, 2010 4:22 pm

    oh good! i misread the title as “bloody hen” so i was a bit worried, but glad she is okay along with her egg stash!

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