What’s All the Squawking About?

My dad was kind enough to give us his old wood burning stove. We figured it was free, so the price was certainly right. It ended up being as free as a “free puppy”. Once we got it home, we realized we’d need to install a chimney where none previously existed, buy all the pipe for it, put a stove board up, and come up with a fire proof platform for it to sit upon. But at least we got a FREE wood burning stove, darnit! And we really do love it. This year our goal is to use absolutely nothing but wood to heat this house. The stove dad gave us is perfect.

Yesterday, while we were working on the finishes touches involved in installing our “free” stove, I heard one of the hens squawking like crazy. When I looked outside, I could see that all the other chickens were in the chicken yard, but one hen was in the coop, and she was carrying on something fierce. I got really excited and told Bernie “I bet she’s laying an egg!” I went running out to the coop, opened the door, stuck my head inside, and looked all around the coop. No egg. I came back inside quite disappointed.

Later in the afternoon I went into the chicken run to change out the water. As I opened the door and walked into the coop, I saw this:

Can you believe it? These hens are two days shy of 21 weeks, and they are starting to lay! I was excited beyond words. You would have thought I’d found a golden egg – and to me, it was worth every bit as much.

When I ran out looking for the egg the first time, I didn’t step inside. The egg was nestled down in a little divot the hen had dug. When I stepped up into the coop, I saw it right away. What a wonderful day!

The egg was absolutely perfect. A little small, but beautifully shaped with a hard shell. Here’s a picture of it in Bernie’s palm:

Is that not the cutest little thing? And here it is next to a store bought egg (keep in mind the store bought egg is an extra large):

And here it is after I cracked it and put it next to the cracked store bought egg:

Look at the deep, luscious color of that yolk. Yum! I have to tell you that was one fine fried egg. I savored every bite of it.

It’s late in the evening now, and I haven’t found another egg today. I am a little disappointed. I had a little chat with the girls about it when I went in to give them a snack. They seemed surprised to learn that I’m actually expecting a little in return for feeding their worthless butts all these months. I mentioned the home made yogurt, the home made whole wheat corn bread, the meal worms, the garden vegetables they get fairly regularly, and all the time I spend catching crickets and earth worms for them. Other than pecking moles off my legs and hopping on my shoulders to peck at my hair, they didn’t seem to be paying any attention to me at all. Chickens these days. Honestly. You just can’t do anything with them.

Bee Free,


One Response to “What’s All the Squawking About?”

  1. kitaye says:

    Congratulations. Nothing beats the taste of eggs from your own chickens. I grew up eating fresh eggs and I can remember well the first time I ate a store bought egg and thought it was spoiled because of the taste.

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