I just wanted to update everyone as to our progress. It is almost June. Carnation Rose has been with us since last September. Her progress is both inspiring and a remarkable experience for me.
For starters, I knew hens lay eggs, as I am well aware of the horrific conditions factory farm laying hens have to endure. Even what is called ‘free range’ layers endure horrific conditions, with tens of thousands of chickens ‘free range’ on the floors of huge factory hangers, never experiencing daylight, soft dirt, grass, never stretching their legs or wings ….. the entire industry is a sham of abuse and cruelty, just to bring us eggs. But hens are absolutely remarkable, a gift from G-d, of this I am sure ….
The day Carnation Rose laid her first egg, I thought she was dying. I didn’t know what was happening, and neither did she. She was crying to me. You have no idea what it is like to have this beautiful rescued chicken, now fully mature, crying through your back porch screen for you. Her crying was like nothing I had ever heard before …. long soulful cries …. similar to a rooster’s crows, but long and drawn out, almost mournful ….. I know dogs and cats cry for us. Now I know that chickens also do. We never really know about animals until we are willing to really get to know them. And then the miraculous happens.
All I can say is that I am glad I was home. I have heard that birds can get impacted from stress and then they can die. We once had a cockatiel this happened to. I also wasn’t fully aware what was happening, as I had never owned a chicken before and surely not one that was about to lay her first egg! So both of us were finding out what was happening for the first time!
So it turns out that she wanted me to be with her when she laid this egg, and I didn’t realize this was what she was saying. It was a very warm day, and I thought she was just dehydrated or very uncomfortable from the heat, so I decided to go outside and spray her gently with the hose, something she loves to cool off with. But when I did this she got even more upset, making even louder noises, terrifying me as to what might be wrong.
I had to leave for work within the hour, so I thought that, if she is going to die, there is nothing I can do. I threw some organic oats into her outdoor cage (I don’t let her free roam in the yard when I am out) and she went in. At least she was in a shaded area, cool, with water and some food, and I left her as comfortable as I could.
I was at work for about 4 hours. When I came home I checked and she was alright in the cage, resting quietly on the cool dirt. She had made a dirt bath for herself and then I saw the egg. A beautiful pink-brown egg. This beautiful chicken laid an egg, something that is a given whether we want to eat eggs or not. This is a gift from G-d. Something that is just as a part of her as anything. Inseparable. Hens and eggs. Like fruit trees and their fruit. Gifts from G-d. Provisions from Ha-Shem.
I think I have realized, since this first experience (I still have to chaperone her every day into her cage to lay an egg … she calls to me through my back porch screen when she is ready) …. that there are certain animals who appreciate what they can do for us … they actually appreciate the fact that we appreciate what they do …. she knows she is going to lay an egg and she needs me to participate in this way …. and she announces it ….. heralds the laying of her egg as the remarkable event that it is …. letting me know that I have to put her in her cage around 10 am …. I make sure I am home …..
So there you have it … an evolving relationship between me and this beautiful, remarkable, smart, social, and very conscientious rescued hen that has fully acclimated to her new life here in my yard and my back porch (she sleeps in a home made cage on my back porch at night and sometimes I put her in there when I go out during the day … we have raccoons prowling the neighborhood, who I discovered were very interested in her, and actually surrounded her outside cage one evening when she was there. They will dig through the soil to get under a cage and kill a chicken, so onto my back porch she goes for the night).
Just a quick view of how things are now:
Is she beautiful, or what?
Thank you, from me and Carnation Rose! G-d bless …..