Garden and Nature in Words

How Hidden Chicken Eggs are Part of a Vast Hidden Food Network

On Monday there were four eggs in the chicken coop. That’s great, one each!

On Tuesday there were three eggs in the coop. Yeah that happens with chickens over 18 months, three out of four is good.

On Wednesday two.

On Thursday one.

On Friday – none 😦

Something of a trend don’t you think? I looked everywhere for the hidden clutch of eggs. Sadly this was not the first time they had gone into disappearing egg laying mode, so I knew all the regular places. In the old olive drum full of compost and straw, under a pile of leaves, in the lawnmower catcher!

But this one was a highlight. Hidden between the shed, the rainwater tank, and a booming fig tree, is an old black compost bin. This spot is almost impossible to shove my ample frame through, and so was the absolute last place I got around to looking at. I’d given up actually, ‘If you want your stinking eggs so bad you can keep them’, I may have mentioned to them a few times. But then one day I noticed them all crowding around the base of that lovely fig tree, and there is normally only one reason why all four of them would get along so nicely – to play their part in the hidden food network that all middle aged chooks are aware of.

Consider all those chickens in all the backyards around the world, stashing eggs from their sad faced carers. There must be millions of them rotting away in all those special little hiding places just out of sight of our hands and eyes.

And here we had over two dozen eggs that kind of went to waste. They only need a few days sitting in the Australian Summer heat to turn, and I couldn’t tell how long they’d been there for. So they all got scrambled and feed to the chickens! Because you know, chickens like eating butter fried eggs as much as we do.

And once I exposed the hidden spot, they figured it out and started laying in the coop again. And this morning, three eggs.

Three eggs is good!

chickens hide eggs

Under a pile of leaves and twigs.

Hidden chicken eggs rather than the nest

The old olive barrel sits about 3 foot off the ground and is a favorite of OBA (Other Bareass).

Hidden chicken egg laying

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7 thoughts on “How Hidden Chicken Eggs are Part of a Vast Hidden Food Network

  1. Ha ha – very familiar story! I suspect my chooks are laying somewhere mysterious these days too… Last time we had your problem of a huge cache of eggs ( https://berowrabackyard.wordpress.com/2014/04/23/a-sentimental-chicken-recalls-the-good-old-days/ ) we tried floating them. Have you given this a go? The ones that sink are ok, the ones that float are off, and the ones that are kind of halfway in between are on their way to being iffy… seems to work…

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    • You know now that you mention it, I did try that once with quail eggs and it worked great. Something to do with the build up of gasses inside the egg. Will be sure to do that the next time a mystery batch is discovered. Thanks for writing in – I checked out your site and enjoyed looking through it. Hope to see you back 😉

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