It was a big day here yesterday, filled with chicken drama! It all started around 9:30 with a visit from a hawk (posted about this in the Predators section yesterday, if anyone has any advice). Fortunately I was in the coop when it happened, and my girls all made it inside safely. Since I felt bad about the poor things being locked up all day, I went out about 11 with a bunch of treats to entertain them. I opened the coop door to find Parmesan the White Rock sitting quietly in the nest box! I'd noticed a couple days before that someone had been testing them out, but hadn't caught anyone in the act yet - I figured it was her or the Red or Black Stars, because they've all been squatting like crazy for the past week (they're all 19 weeks). Parmesan jumped down to check out the assortment of treats I brought in, but only stayed for a couple minutes before heading back up to the nesting box. Then, Tikka the Red Star flew up and started trying out the adjacent boxes. The other birds were making their usual racket, but Parmesan didn't seem bothered except for when they heard a hawk cry outside and the whole coop went silent Parmesan stayed in the box for maybe 10 minutes, very calm and quiet - just making purring noises like a little cat. She did seem to be trying to push something out, she panted occasionally and I thought I saw her comb go a little lighter. After a while she got out and started moving shavings around in another nest, so I thought she was still working on the egg. I walked over to check, just in case - and this is what I found: Finally!! It was my very first fresh egg, and it was perfect! Still warm and the bloom not even dried on it. It never got a chance to cool off, it was cracked and in the frying pan as soon as I snapped a few more bad pictures with my cell phone: It was the best egg I've ever eaten. The shell was thick, the yolk was huge and bright orange, and the flavor was just incredible. But the most surprising thing happened a few hours later when I went out to the coop to look for more eggs (none yet). I was petting some of the squatters when along came Tender, an 18 week old EE who is smaller than the others and who has never actually allowed anyone to touch her since she got out of the brooder (I've tried, but she is FAST!). Well, this time Tender squatted. And she kept squatting. Long enough for me to pull my phone out of my pocket while I petted her with one hand, wait impatiently for the camera app to pop up, and take some pictures.