The hens are very busy at the moment. There is a lot of new plant growth to eat, a greenhouse to vandalise and mysterious peepings from the garage that need to be investigated. Not to mention the extremely tall human walking about and making horrendous noises with various power tools (we are having the bathrooms replaced). Only some of them are busy laying eggs, though.
Purdy is still in her broody trance, shrieking at anyone who gets too close. The soppy silkie sisters have laid about fifteen eggs between them, and then returned to broodiness. Sigh. The others are picking up the slack like the troopers that they are, although Mabel seems to be having a bit of a problem.
For the last month or two, I have occassionally found an egg in the run, or on the coop floor. It's taken a while to work out who the culprit is, but it's now clear that it's the mighty Mabel. I am most puzzled. The other girls are using the nest boxes and there is no sign or red mite. I frequently see Mabel sitting in the nest box, yet she rarely leaves her egg there any more. I'm beginning to wonder if she is unaware that the egg is somehow following her out of the nest. A sort of egg incontinence. I have given her the once over, and can find no obvious injury or weakness, so it remains a mystery. If anyone has any ideas, I'd love to hear them.
The chicks are growing up scarily fast. My plan is to sell the suspected boy and girl black chicks as a pair, and to keep the lavender. That is if it proves to be a girl. Despite feathering up fastest, and having a very ladylike manner, it does have more of a comb than the other female. So we shall wait and see.
If the lavender is a girl, it will be staying. And named Penelope.