Inside, old red hen is setting her nest diligently. She greats me with a chuckle that only a broody hen can repeat. Her fluffy feathers covering a myriad of guinea eggs and five turkey eggs given by a friend. Should she hatch them all she will be mother to a yours, mine and ours collection of babes. Since guineas and turkeys share and incubation period of 28 days give or take a few, and chickens are in the 21 day range, Wednesday I'll give her a few eggs of my EE hens down in the coop that are enjoying the company of the big blue Cochin rooster. Imagine, one old red hen, followed about by a lovely gathering of poults, keets and chicks. What a sight that would be.
An EE hen
A white chick peeks out at me thru her wing. As their little feeder and waterer are filled countless young birds flood to my feet in a tidal wave of feathers rowdily calling for their own breakfasts. Wyandottes, Cochins, mutts and various unknowns all let me know they are ready for their share. A big white hen peers out from the nest box, a signal which lets me know she has already gotten down to the business of laying her egg of the day. She is one of my EE hens. A cross breed that lays the same brilliant blue eggs of the Araucauna and Ameracuana without having to go thru a hatchery. Hers are the eggs which I will put under the old broody hen in the other coop. Hopes of feather footed blue egg laying chicks fill my dreams.
A second bunch of chicks.
This white one has gone among the missing.
Lastly is my delightful pony. She and Sunny take turns in the paddock and this evening she will trek with me thru the sun and lawn to take her own turn at liberty. But for this morning she is happy to have her forelock scratched, and chow down on a few flakes of my dad's delightful fresh hay and a bucket of cold water as she waits her turn.
Old lady Silver.
One of Miss Laura's grown babies