A clockwork chicken. C minus 21.

It’s not that I’m a stupid person; I’m not. In reality, I tend toward clever with moments of real insight. It’s that I’m intellectually stubborn, and, having lit upon an idea, I have a hard time seeing any other possibilities. I have brain blinkers.

It just seemed so perfect that Buffy would be my broody. She’d always been the Most Likely To Demand The Chicken Butt Handshake, she and Trixie. And then, with the attack, she’d become accustomed to long periods of sitting in a crate, and she became accustomed to isolation, being separated from her flock. It all seemed so perfect.

Buffy has been laying inside the wicker nest inside the chick brooder inside the coop, and she has been sitting the (now) six pencil-lined eggs therein…for a while. Then she gets up and rejoins the flock. She seems to be regaining her status within the flock; I watched her give Coraline a good boink to the bean yesterday, and Coraline’s pretty high up in the order. Maybe Buffy’s not ready to give up career for family, just as she’s getting it back…

So, I decided to open up the field, and let in a little healthy competition. Maybe it wouldn’t be Buffy who brooded the chicks; maybe it would be someone else. I made the decision to leave the brooder open during free-range hours, to see who would express an interest. Coraline has laid there twice, but hasn’t shown any inclination to brood.

Yesterday, it came to me like a thunderclap. Who sits and sits and sits without fail, without ever laying an egg? TRIXIE.

I picked Trixie up from her moving-blanket, tool-bench nest and introduced her to the chick brooder nest. She gathered the eggs underneath her and settled in. I held my breath…

An hour later, she was back out grazing with the rest of the girls. Exhale. Poopypants.

This morning, she was making one hell of a racket in the barn, as only Trixie can (truly, the acoustics in there are remarkable), and I couldn’t figure out why, until I looked into the coop. Buffy was due to lay, and was sitting the eggs in the brooder.

Aha! COMPETITION. It’s the Battle of the Blonds, gentle reader.

I haven’t given up hope yet. The turkeys arrive one week today (on Good Friday, no less…what better than that?!), and there will be heart-breakingly adorable peeping coming from the brooder next door, leaving two weeks for someone to get maternal.

Will I get a broody? And, if so, who will it be?!


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