Last week I struggled with collecting eggs as a very protective hen guarded not only her eggs, but also the eggs of her housemates. I've since learned that this phenomenon is called "brooding chicken" or as my Grandmother put it, "The hen has turned clucky." My plan was to separate Henny and a roo so that she could fulfill her maternal desires....until two more hens decided to become her accomplices. So after doing the math:
1 egg laid each day x 3 clucky hens x 27 days (this is approximately how long it takes to go from egg to chick) = 81 eggs ...that is a lot of eggs sacrificed to one clucky hen.
On Saturday I entered the chicken coop, determined to show those hens that I was boss. I decided I could no longer be afraid of my sinister hens. I must be bold. It worked. I fooled myself and the hens. They haven't messed with me since. Yesterday, all the chickens rushed to me when I came with my ice cream bucket full of treats (they love my vegetable scraps) and no one followed me into the hen house. I was able to gather the eggs without fearing for my life.
In case you are wondering...the secret to my confidence and success? A pair of gloves.