Lesson 418 – The compulsion of eggs

I recently came across this little bit of interesting hen information:

“Did you know… To produce one egg, it takes a hen 26-28 hours, and to do so, she requires 5 oz. of food & 10 oz. of water. After a thirty minute rest period she starts all over again! That’s one busy chick!”

I just think it’s amazing that these birds are so programmed to constantly produce like this. Granted, they slow down in the winter but they don’t stop. We’ll still be getting eggs from this endless production cycle.

You couldn’t stop this cycle if you wanted. It’s not within your reach to halt it anyway. It’s something that’s innate, a need, a compulsion to create this egg within her body and then to push it out, over and over and over.

It’s hard work, and just because millions and millions of other hens are also doing this, doesn’t mean that it comes without pain and some temporary discomfort.

Pushing an egg out of your body is tough, tough work.

And what does she get for all this selfless and painful work?

She gets a kid who sits down at the dinner table, looks at the food, wrinkles her nose and then loudly proclaims that it’s gross and she’s not going to eat that.


But nature has a way of easing all pains. There’s time, there’s rest, and there’s also the memory of sweet smelling babes swaddled in your arms. The pull of a tiny hand reaching out to touch your face. A child crawling into your bed to share the warmth with you under your covers.

And because you have this desire beyond reason, this need and compulsion, you willingly eat the food and drink the water preparing your body for the next egg to be laid.


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Filed under All things chickens, All things local, Backyard Chickens, chicken care, Chicken fun, Life Lessons, New Hampshire, Personal, Project Chickens before the Eggs, The Family

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