Yesterday we brought home three Red Sussex hens, 20 weeks old, who had just started laying. We’ve been putting so much time and effort into our flock of birds without reaping any rewards yet – they are still too young to be laying. So, we decided it would be nice to get a few eggs for our efforts, and picked up the Red Sussex girls.
They are lovely, very calm and friendly, very willing to let the children hold them and carry them around the yard. They’re beautiful girls with deep red feathers accented with white here and there. They settled right in as soon as we took them out of their boxes, checking out the chicken coop and strutting around the place as though they had always been there.
This morning as I hung the laundry on the line, I heard a low clucking sound coming from the bushes beside me. One of the Red Sussex girls was nestled in there, making contented little noises and sitting quite still. After a few minutes, she got up and wandered away. The children and I looked around in the bushes, and VOILA! AN EGG! A beautiful, perfect, light brown egg, sitting there on the ground looking absolutely lovely and wonderful. Lynden and Raina were thrilled, and took turns holding the egg in their cupped palms, making sounds of wonder and awe. I whooped and danced around, laughing with the kids, being silly and delighted at this, our very first farm egg. The feeling was akin to opening a present on Christmas morning to find that it was just what you had been desperately hoping for. Perfect.
We looked around the farm in search of the two eggs that we assume the other two chickens must have laid somewhere, but we never did find them. The kids checked in the coop, but no eggs in there either. We’ll have to convince the girls that laying their eggs in the nesting boxes inside the coop is a much better idea than randomly dropping them around the place; I’m sure the excitement of finding eggs in the bushes will wear off fairly rapidly if it becomes a daily thing.
So there it is, sitting in our fridge: the very first egg. It seemed rather silly to cook up one single egg, so I placed it in an egg carton, right in the centre, where it will sit and wait for more eggs to join it. When we have a half-dozen we will feast like kings. My guess is that it will be the best breakfast we’ve had yet.