Wednesday, May 7

Such a WannaBe

We have such incredible neighbors! We are learning so much from them, they are very patient, and their children (all 8 of them) are absolutely delightful. They have a wonderful son J, Christian's age, that I tend to ask a lot of questions, bless him!

When we first moved here J came over to introduce himself to me. He is very polite. I had already been watching my neighbors and admiring their huge happy family. Something I noticed was that the little girls seemed to only wear dresses. So I asked J what church his family goes to. He told me that they 'study God at home as a family.' So I boldly pushed forward and asked, 'Is it your religious belief that your sisters wear dresses?' He looked perplexed at me and said, 'Well mam, we call that playing dress-up!' I felt so silly.

Later some of his little sisters told us that J thinks we are 'city slickers' and that we're gonna take a lot of work! Boy is he right.

So today I asked J to come over because I was concerned about one of their hens. This hen had been in our barn for the past several days and hadn't moved a bit other than to blink. So I started to worry that it was hurt and wanted him to take a looksy. He authoritatively marched in, grabbed a stick and carefully peaked under the hen, and said, 'She's sitting on a slew of eggs.' Oh! And then he politely asked if the hen could stay in our barn... well of course... how exciting I thought. So hear I go again, asking one of my questions. Might I please add, right here, that I later today asked each of my children AND my very intelligent husband the same question and they don't know the answer either. So if someone DOES know the answer, please share, and please don't judge US... I am already quite aware of my cluelessness! So I asked J, 'how does a hen know that her eggs have chicks in them and aren't the normal eggs she lays each morning that you collect and eat?' Again, J looked at me perplexed and simply said, 'cause God made them that way.' Was that a dumb question? Does the rooster 'fertilize' the hen or the eggs after they are laid? How does the hen know to try and find a hidden place, lay eggs, and then know that she needs to sit on them to hatch them? So I AM indeed a country girl wanna be and I need to know this since I am too embarrassed to ask J again. That beautiful family of 10 probably got a good ole laugh over me during their family dinner tonight, oh well.

I am NOT smarter than a 5th grader... and I just proved that to my 12 year old neighbor. Still wondering though... I wish he had just explained the whole process to me... I think he is caught off guard when asked something that is such common knowledge to him. So to review... I don't care which came first... the chicken or the egg... I want to know... how did the yolk become a chick! Anyone ? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

7 comments:

mom2eight said...

when you go to the backyardchickens.com, go to:
at the bottom of the page,

Other Resources (require Adobe Acrobat Reader):

Chicken Questions & Answers - (Texas Agriculture Extension Service L-5323)

look on page 2

mom2eight said...

not sure what happened here. I posted a message before this one but it didn't post.
I found this site
http://www.backyardchickens.com/LC-howto.html

kb said...

I am no help. I have no clue, but I sure did love your post. How fun!

kmmclain said...

Dawn,
I found your question interesting and did some research. Here is a possible explanation.
"Why Chickens Leave the Nest


All chickens lay eggs in a series - never more than one per day. If the eggs are not collected, and a sufficient number of eggs are allowed to remain in the nest, the hen may stop laying eggs and start brooding. When the hen leaves the nest after laying an egg, it cools which suspends the development of the embryo inside. If the ambient temperature remains between 45F and 65F, the embryos will remain viable for as long as two weeks. When the hen becomes broody and sits on her eggs for three weeks, all of the eggs will hatch at about the same time. This is why it is important for the hen to leave the nest after laying.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Breaking Broodies


When we remove the eggs, the hen supposes: "There are not yet enough," and continues to lay. The hens of some breeds will get broody anyway after some time. This condition can be cured by placing the hen in a "broody pen". This is a small cage, hung in the hen house. The cooling of the bottom, the swinging movements, and the lack of eggs to sit on are said to cure this condition. The broodiness trait has been removed from most commercial laying breeds through selection. The modern laying hen has delegated her responsibility of hatching, raising, and educating chicks to humans. In nature, the poor creatures would soon become extinct. "
You don't know me, but your brother Nate was our home teacher in Alabama, and I met you briefly at girls camp in 2006. I was the YW President for the Madison 2nd. ward. I enjoy reading your blog.

Kelly McLain

Lisha said...

When you find the answer, please let me know... I've actually always wondered this myself!

Debbie said...

So, I guess all eggs have the potential of becoming a chick if they are incubated long enough?? but i'm not sure at what point you say we can't eat that egg because the hen has been sitting on it too long and it'll be a chick by now.

J sounds like a lot of fun, and I LOVE Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader! haha

Beth said...

I am clueless too... let us know what you discover!