I found out why the hen stopped laying, I told The Girl.
“Why?” she asked.
You know how we haven’t found any eggs lately in the chicken coop? Come here and see what I found, I said, showing her the clutch of twelve eggs I found by reaching deep under the coop.
“All those?” The Girl asked.
Yes, I said – I don’t know if they’re good anymore, but we’ll find out. I’m amazed rats haven’t gotten them after almost two weeks. And I don’t know if that’s all of them – there might have been more I couldn’t feel under there.
“How did she do that?”
She was sticking her little chicken derriere as far as it would go underneath the coop, I said, and then letting the egg roll away to the space beneath. I blocked up the crevice for now and laid down some straw inside the coop – just in case the mulch was rough on their bum.
If that’s not the reason, I said, I don’t know why they would want to lay outside in the rain rather than inside where it’s warm and dry.
“Well, she does have a chicken brain,” The Girl said.
Photo: The Girl by a favourite tree swing.