Thursday, November 29, 2007

Looky, Looky

Tuesday morning I thought I heard funny squawks from the chicken coop as I was eating my breakfast, but later looked out and counted all six hens running around their yard. I ran some errands in the morning and didn't check on them until after lunch. When I opened up their back door, I saw this:

See anything in the hay? And this hen was nervously strutting around inside the coop:

This whole operation may look like a poultry exercise, but actually it is an economics lesson for our children. Lesson one is on Economies of Scale. Egg #1 is a very expensive egg. I think we'll bronze it. Isn't it beautiful?

Here it is next to an officially classified large egg from the farmer around the corner for comparison:

Hens lay pullet-sized eggs (smaller) for the first few weeks, then they get larger. I'd say they are about 75% of your usual supermarket large eggs.

I called my husband at work to tell him the good news, starting with, "Guess what we got today? Something we've been waiting a long time for!" He replied, "My package came!"

When I picked up my daughter at school for an after-school appointment and asked her to guess what came today that we've been waiting for, she answered, "Peter got words!!"

Upon further prompting neither one guessed chicken egg until I made clucking noises. Yup, we're all on the same page around here.

This morning I woke up right before sunrise to go to the bathroom, and I heard stressed squawking from the chicken coop. They have a light in the coop that is on for two hours in the morning to give them about 14 hours of light (so they lay eggs). I looked out, saw the light glowing in the coop window and wondered what kind of party was goin' down. I hoped it was an egg-laying party and not the chicken version of a Tupperware party.

I was tempted to go outside with a flashlight, but my warm bed sounded much better. An hour and a half later I sprang out of bed and went outside to check on the ladies. I opened the back door of the coop and was greeted with 2 eggs! Chickens lay an egg every day and a half or so, and I suspect that hen #1 laid another egg and a new hen started laying. Another possibility is that hens #2 and #3 started laying and hen #1 is still in shock about what happened to her two days ago. If they keep to the day and a half schedule, we should get another egg tomorrow afternoon. We shall see....