–continued from here—
We continued to wait.
Idee continued to set.
She’d already been broody a good couple of weeks before the hatching eggs arrived. Now that she was on “real” eggs, she seemed more determined than ever to see this through, whatever it was. As the weeks passed, I worried about her. She seemed sometimes to be in a trance-like state, and I knew from previous broody spells that she always lost weight during these times.
I worried I would go into the coop one day and find her dead of dehydration or starvation or some kind of deadly -ation. She never seemed to go out, the water level on the waterer I put beside her never seemed to go down. I couldn’t catch her off those eggs. At least, I thought, this time it’s for a good cause, better than that air she’d been trying to hatch all those times before.
Such dedication. But would it be the end of her? I was afraid to toss her off the eggs to eat and drink for fear she’d stop sitting, and afraid she wouldn’t have the strength to care for the chicks (if there were chicks) when they finally arrived.
I reminded myself she knows what she’s doing more than I do, so I decided to trust her instincts and leave her alone to do her thing. Very probably she was getting off the nest occasionally and I just wasn’t catching her do it. I wasn’t watching 24 hours a day, after all.
On day 16, I was passing the run and happened to glance in and there was Idee, off the nest and gadding about, drinking water, scratching in the dirt, acting like a regular chicken. The others were giving her a hard time as they always do when she’s broody (the pecking order is real, folks), and she was giving as good as she got.
How long had she been out there?
Slightly panicked, I went into the coop and felt the eggs. Cool to the touch! Oh, no! Had it been hours? Had she abandoned them? Were they duds and she knew it? Was she ever going back on the eggs? Was it too late? Was this the end?
Will Ashley accept Lance’s proposal just to make Brandon jealous?
Next time on . . .
All My Chickens.