Today when I was tidying up the chickens' abode, our leghorn, Greta, paced back and forth outside the door, then she inched her way up the entrance ramp, and finally she flew over the top of my head landing on the perch that runs the length of the nesting boxes. She had a job to do and I was in her way! I knew what she was up to, so I hung around for the big event. I was rewarded for my patience.
You see, it is a very big event because our new hens are just beginning to lay their very first eggs! They start out small. I placed a normal size egg in the nest on the left for size comparison. The brown egg and the white egg in the foreground, that are lying in the nest on the right, were our very first eggs... laid yesterday. The egg lying behind them is Greta's that she laid today. As you can see, it is larger than the two laid yesterday but still not full-size.
Besides the excitement of beginning to receive our first fresh organic antibiotic-free hormone-free eggs for the season, the hens have demonstrated their understanding of where their eggs are to be laid... not on the ground under the coop, or in the bag of wood shavings used for coop floor bedding, and not on the metal slanted top of the nesting boxes where the eggs will slide off and smash onto the floor. Oh, we've seen it all. Now that they've mastered this skill, our next objective is for them to roost at night where they ought.
When darkness draws near, the hens have been lining up on top of the nesting boxes unit. Our preference is that they park their heinies on the rows of tree branches Dick provided for them. It is a selfish reason on my part. When they camp out overnight on their tree branches roost, their droppings fall directly underneath so cleanup is simplified. Presently, their unruly sleeping habits are creating messes on top of the feed storage containers, on the roof of the nesting boxes, inside the nesting boxes, and on top of the bale of hay. Tonight we are going to cover the nesting boxes with a tarp to restrict that area and guide them to the roost.