We hit a milestone in the Coop de Ville today: our first ever DOZEN DAY. I say “we” even though I didn’t personally lay an egg, but it somehow feels like a team effort. I like to think of the hens as having a sense of personal pride when they lay an egg. Probably a sense of relief, too. And I admit I feel a certain maternal bond with these hens….which I shed immediately when I snatch those eggs right out from under them and start adding the totals in my head. Like that nasty lady chicken farmer in “Chicken Run”. (If you haven’t seen it, you must.) I have a pair of oversized black rubber boots, and in them I take on her appearance. She’s quick with an ax, though, and I have no such tendencies.
To celebrate Dozen Day, I intend to empty the fridge of leftover Chinese food for them. They LOVE noodles and it’s a hoot to watch them suck those down.
I have read that there is a level of internal competition among cohabitating hens where those who “put out” (eggs) are considered at the top of the literal pecking order, and the hens who have less admirable results are actually mocked and marginalized. It’s like everyone’s playground nightmare happening right in the coop. I wonder if they compare egg sizes, too. Scary. So, I do my part to build the confidence of every hen. I am big on affirmation statements as I hold each one. Like talking to a plant, only they cluck back and do this thing that sounds like “brrrrrrrrUCK brrrrrruck”. It’s relaxed sounding and affectionate and…..I’m starting to sound like a crazy person.