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Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Decoy Eggs

Our chickens have a 3 storey apartment. I had placed a small basket on the 3rd storey to give Maggie some privacy when brooding eggs. My problem was that she did not know the use of that basket. She laid 2 eggs on the ground floor, after much shredding of newspaper.

To teach her to use the basket, I placed her 1st egg inside it. Unfortunately, this egg had a super thin shell (because she was somewhat undernourished when she arrived). When Maggie sat on it, it broke. At that, both Maggie and Maxi proceeded to eat up their own egg.

I was upset that I had lost that first egg to chicken cannibalism. So, I kept watch for the 2nd egg getting laid. When I saw Maggie peck at it, I took the egg. There is something magical about a still warm egg.

So, I ate it. Yumzz...

Soft boiled Maggie's egg.

Thus far, Maggie has laid 2 eggs and there are still none left. How about that for a PSLE Math problem? 

Maggie laid 2 eggs. How many are left?

Me, I had 2 real life problems... 
(1) Maggie did not know where to lay her eggs in the cage, 
(2) Maggie is an egg cannibal. 

So, I asked the fellas on Raising Chickens 101 Facebook group. They advised me to get decoy eggs. Putting decoy eggs in the nesting box is one way to show the hens where to lay their eggs and brood. These decoy eggs are also inedible. Thus, the hens learn that it is no use pecking them. 

I bought a clutch of plastic eggs. I placed 2 in the basket. Apparently, hens can count. So, I am quite sure Maggie knows that she has laid 2 eggs already. After some serious pecking, by nightfall, Maggie was dutifully sitting on 2 plastic eggs. This morning, she laid a 3rd egg inside the basket. She did not peck this one.

Plastic eggs from Chong Pang market.

Maggie sitting on 2 plastic eggs last night.

2 fake eggs and 1 real egg. Go on! Guess which one is the real one.

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