Sunday, May 4, 2014

The 'Thing'

 A few days ago, as I was collecting the eggs, I discovered a mystery object in the second nest box. It was well hidden under some straw, so well that I almost missed it. Even though it was buried beneath the covers and barely visible, I could tell right away that it wasn't just another egg. In fact, I gasped at first and stood there staring at it, not even wanting to peel the straw back and take a look!

 It was pink, not brown, blue or those greenish/gray looking eggs we sometimes get. It also didn't have the smooth appearance of an egg shell, but something that looked more like skin. At first I thought maybe an animal had gotten in the next box and hunkered down, OR that one of my birds had squirted out an organ.

 Being the chicken that I am, (no pun intended), I got my trusty pink chicken herding stick and some gloves before I dared touch it or pluck it up. In my imagination, I pictured this little pink alien "thing" come to life as soon as I picked it up, snarling and flashing it's fangs. Did I mention little beady black eyes? In about two minutes, I had already given this creature a life of its own and I was scared of it.

 Finally I put on my gloves and slowly uncovered it and picked it up for a closer look.

 I know it looks like a tempting apple dumpling, but I can assure you its not! In fact, this picture was taken a few days after I discovered it, so it didn't look as pink as it did the first time I saw it. It also started to smell funny. I put it on the trash can where we store the chicken feed so Dan could see it, then told him not to mess with it because I wanted to take pictures (to share with you!) and so I sort of forgot about it.

 I'm wondering if it's a failed attempt at an egg. I really don't know what else it could be. The fact that it was so well hidden in the straw backs up my assumption. I can the poor hen who pooped this thing out, stand up and look at back at her craftsmanship. As her eyes widen with horror, her cheeks grow lobster red. She looks around nervously to see if anyone has seen her in the next box and that could identify her as the matriarch of this "thing". When she sees that she's in the clear, she hurriedly covers the reviling object with as much straw as she can, all the while trying not to draw attention to herself wildly scratching away inside the nest box. When she feels like it's buried god enough, she glances out the door of the nest box and looks around to see if she can get out without having been seen. Ba-gacking and flapping her wings, she jumps down into the coop and runs away like the devil is nipping at her heels.

 Poor girl...

 Before I laid this "thing" to rest in Manure Memorial Gardens, I performed an autopsy. After some examination, the results are inconclusive.

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