After my bragging about our four-egg-day (four eggs from 3 chickens!) on my blog, via email and maybe even with a phone message or two...my MIL called to ask about our chickens. I told her they were doing great: laying an egg each a day, not fighting, not pecking, not eating eggs, eating all their vegetables, not going broody, not pecking at me... oh my sweet, and perfect model chickens.
The VERY NEXT DAY
Yep, a pecked egg. You can even see the double beak hole where she pecked it. I found this under the perch in the chicken pen.
To top it off, our black hen (one of the infamous mean girls) has been in the nest box a lot, and even pecked at me when I tried to shoo her out yesterday. She has been pulling out the small soft feathers from her belly and under her wings to line her nest with. Gee, going broody? Yep.
Going broody means that she thinks she wants to sit on her eggs to hatch them. In theory, this would not be a bad thing, it is what God intended for the eggs, to be hatched into little chicks, in theory. The reality of the situation is that we don't want chicks, we want eggs. The hen would probably get bored or distracted half way through and abandon the nest, leaving half incubated no-longer-edible eggs for me to deal with. The hen is also preventing the other two hens from using the nest box. Hens also stop laying during the time they are sitting on a nest, so overall production goes down. Some hens make very good mothers, and judging by the history of our two 'mean girls' this one may make a great mother and raise up a flock all by herself. But we don't want that.
By bragging on my small flock, I chicken jinxed myself.