We have a bit of a conundrum here at the farm. Four of our laying hens have "gone broody." Broody means they are sitting on a clutch of eggs hoping to hatch baby chicks. I, too, am hoping they hatch baby chicks, but they seem to sit forever, and nothing happens. For example, Mean Martha sat for weeks, and nothing happened except we had a bunch of rotten, partially developed eggs. She dictated a laying box, she pecked everyone who got within striking range, and then she just got up and walked away. Incidentally, we call her Mean Martha because she is mean. She looks mean, with her little beady, black chicken eyes. She acts mean with her pecking and such. Yes, Mean Martha earned her name.
I have stopped gathering the eggs for our consumption. I cracked an egg to make omelets and screamed because an alien-looking form had replaced my bright yellow yolks. It was a partially developed embryo, with a head and tiny little translucent legs. It was awful. I'm not sure I will be able to eat eggs again. I have been buying brown eggs from the store because I don't trust our eggs. What a ridiculous situation I have created. The eggs that are in the laying boxes and abandoned are fed to the pigs. However, four of the girls are sitting on eggs, and I don't know if I should let them sit and see what happens or feed all the eggs to the pigs and start over. I fear that the eggs are partially developed, and I end up killing future baby chicks. Sigh.
For the time being, I will allow the girls to sit and hopefully hatch a few chicks. The eggs laid in the unoccupied boxes will be fed to the pigs because I trust no one at this point. Hopefully, the girls will get this out of their system, and I can go back to fresh, trustworthy eggs. Until then, it is the sadly pale yolked organic eggs from the store. Seriously, sheer ridiculousness. I have twenty-one hens, eggs overflowing, and I am buying organic eggs. In this situation, I think I see why my bibbed-wearing buddy gets frustrated with me. Sigh.
As always, stay safe, be smart, may your eggs not be filled with aliens, and keep washing your hands.