Ebony went broody three days ago. Marmite has been broody for three weeks and Smoke has been broody for four weeks. I think Smoke is beginning to come out of it as she is staying out for longer when I get her out for a break.
Having three broody girls is clogging up the nest boxes when the other girls want to lay their egg, even with Marmite and Smoke, sharing a nest box. Yesterday Ebony was in one nest box while Marmite and Smoke were sharing the nest box next door. Jasmine and Spangle both wanted to lay their egg but these two girls won’t share.
Jasmine and Spangle were doing a lot of shouting as they both wanted the third nest box. Jasmine finally took possession of it.
Spangle settled on top of the nest box next to the store cabinet. When I have moved the nest boxes out to sweep behind them I have twice found a broken egg behind this nest box. I think this is due to Spangle laying there and the egg rolls down the back of the nest box. Spangle likes to be higher up to lay her egg and in the past had laid an egg on top of the store cabinet. I have left it blocked up ever since.
I decided to try to resolve this issue yesterday by giving Spangle a crisp box as a temporary nest box. I put it on top of the nest box and Spangle happily settled in to it.
I realised when I took this photo that there wasn’t enough height for Spangles tail. Spangle has the biggest tail of the little girls. I have used a crisp box successfully in the past but now realise that I must have turned it sideways to give more height.
Spangle looked so settled that I didn’t have the heart to move her. She only lays an egg once a week or once every two weeks and has false alarms in between so I was certain that she wouldn’t lay anyway.
True to form Spangle came out of the crisp box giving the egg shout but when I checked there was no egg. I am used to this with Spangle. Jasmine laid the only egg of the day. I put the crisp box in the shed for next time it is needed.