Ginger is just the sweetest bird you could imagine. It's unfortunate, that she's at the bottom of my pecking order of three hens. But aside from a few nips to her comb, she doesn't seem any worse for ware. I know there are many, many other chickens who are not at the bottom of the pecking order who don't live as well as Ginger.
And I give her special treats to compensate. She used to go stand in the corner with her head down when Pumpkin would nip at her. Now she just moves out of her way. I do try to feed them over a large area so she has a chance to get treats away from Pumpkin. And if I catch Pumpkin pecking, I'll pull Ginger aside and give her special treats.
It didn't take her long to learn that drill. I open the gate to leave and she follows me out. She leads the way into the garage and hops up on my husband's work out bench. From there, she looks up the big meal worm farm, then looks over at me and says Cheep Cheep Cheep. I swear I can hear her saying "I want some".
Anyway, she has always had a fascination with the nest boxes. When I go to collect eggs, she darts into the hen house and watches me intently. She'll even step into one of the nest boxes and inspect it. Each nest box still contains one colorful plastic Easter Egg. They are their training eggs to show them where to lay. But Ginger is so fascinated by these eggs, that I never collected them. And partly, too because I was concerned that she would become an egg eater and I thought pecking at a plastic egg would deter her.
When I go into their house in the morning to scoop out the previous night's droppings, Ginger is right there to observe. And will typically go sit in one of the nest boxes and watch me. I fear that she may become broody one day and never snap out of it. But we'll cross that bridge when we get there.
Yesterday, while I was doing my usual weekend chores, I noticed that the pine shaving in the nests was getting a big sparse. So I put a big scoop of fresh pine shaving into each nest and spritzed them with DE, just to make sure that we don't have an issue with mites.
Ginger was right there watching my every move. As I finished and replaced the plastic egg into each nest, she gently stepped into each nest to inspect my work. She moved the egg around with her beak, settled down on top of the egg to make sure that it was comfy. She first sat in Coco's nest. Then she sat in the middle nest which is where Pumpkin lays. Then she came to the last nest box, the one closest to the Pop Door and settled right down. It must have been just right.
Obviously, my minor modifications passed Goldilocks rules for comfy nest boxes because I found three eggs today, each one laid in the girls favorite nest box.