Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Update on mama hen a.k.a. Ruby

When we first got the Barred Rock hens, we had picked out names for them. But, we soon realized, it was very hard to tell them apart. So, we dropped the names.

Now that there is one which is singled out, by sitting on eggs, we've decided to name her. 

Ruby is the name of our friends' dog and Natalie has loved it ever since she heard it. Plus, it is just so darn cute to hear her say it. "Wooby."

So today, Ruby took her little break for eating, drinking, and the other. I was watching her and taking pictures, so I'm not sure when the following occurred, but another hen (Barred Rock) got up on the nest. I discovered it when I opened the door trying to see how many eggs there were. Ruby was in the yard, but here was another on the nest. Hmmm. What's going to happen now?

Ruby came back, hopped up on the platform, and went in the door. No feathers flew, no crazed clucks sounded, just some sounds of a hen settling down. I peaked in, lo and behold, both hens were cuddled up on the nest. 

Now,  I don't know if that's going to be a problem. For one thing, the other hen may just be laying an egg. If so, she should be out shortly. But if she is also broody, I don't know what we should do. Can two hens 'share' a nest? Or do we need to separate them?

One book we looked at talked about giving hens their own set-apart place to sit, otherwise you could have as many as three piled up on the same nest.

How crazy this is, to have waited years for a broody hen and now to have two on the same nest?!

Well, I'm going to check on them now.

Then I've got to get the Focaccia pizza crust baked. Mm-mmm.

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