Olive, the sweetest little overachiever, has gone from being my best layer to being my first little broody hen. At just under 30 weeks old, she has now decided to foray into motherhood and has been sitting tight on her one little egg since Saturday morning. I had noticed that she was lingering in the nest box and making strange trilling noises, but I thought I had simply interrupted her laying. After all, she happily hopped down to eat the treats I had thrown to the flock, but when she was done, she jumped back up onto her egg.
She was originally sitting on what she thought was three eggs – the egg she laid on Saturday morning and two more. Unfortunately for her, the other two were wooden. I removed the wooden eggs on Sunday morning, and she has been sitting on her little egg ever since, with many breaks to eat and stretch her legs. I wonder if she is sitting enough for the egg or taking too many breaks. At first, I thought she had two real eggs, otherwise I probably would have added another. By the time I realized that two of her three eggs were wooden (it was dark on Saturday night), adding another egg would have stretched out her potential hatch over too long a time period.
Each night, she is sitting tight in the nest box rather than hanging out on the roost with her buddies. Today was the third day since she laid the egg and began sitting, and I will candle the egg on the fifth day to see if it is developing. A young broody is likely to quit early and go back to her regular chickening, but with a good deal of luck, Olive might be the first proud little mama in the flock with one little chick in just a few weeks’ time.