Late yesterday afternoon, Goldie ran frantically back and forth in front of the chicken run. I finally broke down and let her in. Chicks were not with her.
At dusk, I went to the barn to see if by any chance the chicks went back there on their own. Yup, they did. They seemed quite settled in, no crying for mama. And there were two eggs in there!! Goldie is laying again, and she has definitely retired from her mama job.
It has been so fascinating to watch this process. Listening to her talk to them made me even more aware of how many different sounds a hen can make when tending to her family. I watched Goldie break up a piece of cheese I gave her into three pretty equal parts and lay them in front of the chicks. I saw her take after both of my dogs when they got too close, and I had no worries that they would harm those chicks! Goldie would take care of them!!! She is such a good mom. But she also knew when it was time to cut the ties.
I am looking forward to moving to my river house in town - meeting with the kitchen contractor this afternoon, and I'm excited about that. However, I am not excited about leaving the chickens when the farm sells. They have taught me so much, and it will be a sad day when I tell them good-bye.