Is 12 too many?

I told Farmer Bradley ‘a mixed dozen’, for no good reason. Maybe I was being greedy – so many breeds! When I sat Calamity Jane down upon her fertile eggs Tuesday, it finally occurred to me that 12 might be too many eggs for one hen to sit. Oops.

But nothing for it, we had to try. Her first attempt was weak – half of the eggs were sitting out in the cold. But like 2012, I just shoved the remaining eggs under her various fluffy parts. Except this time it was hard to find enough space under there. And she did manage to sit them – she does this wonderful little seated dance – a shimmy with her wings slightly extended from her body, to get all of the eggs settled around her.

Over the next couple of days I noticed a few eggs not always making it under the fluff. This happens when she shifts position. And she eventually worries the stragglers back under her breast with her beak.

Calamity Jane missing a few eggs

Calamity Jane missing a few eggs

But it finally appears that the Marans eggs are not worthy of her heat. The pair of them now sit a distance from her. Such a shame – I would have kept a Copper Black Marans hen. But, I keep having to remind myself, this is not about me. This is about meeting my hen’s needs. And if she doesn’t need to sit on Marans eggs, I guess she doesn’t have to.

The rejected Marans eggs

The rejected Marans eggs

UPDATE: After my olla class on Saturday, Vicky A. followed me home and took my two Marans eggs to try out in her egg incubator. Let you know if anything comes of that!

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