I used to child mind, but most of 'my' children have grown up now, some even have babies of their own. However last week I was asked to meet one of the youngest children from school just for an hour or so until his mother could collect him.
We had a lovely time, watching the turkeys hatch, the young Exchequer Leghorns ride on the hens back and just generally talking poultry.
He lives on a smallholding and his mother is a vet so he is very familiar with livestock. He is a bright child and knows everything that is happening at his place and asks quite thought provoking questions, so when he told me about his Araucana being broody but how she wouldn't have chicks as they no longer had a cockerel I offered him some fertile eggs.( only as I knew his mother would be OK with it)
Rather than say yes immediately he became quite thoughtful.
"We would need eggs from layers .. he said (he knows I also keep a meat flock)
Also I would need to think where I could put her, I don't want her bothered by the others.
The chicks would need a run so the rats can't get them.
I'll ask Mum."
So when his mother came she agreed, as long as he could plan how to make a new house and run, with his Dad's help. He would phone me at the weekend.
Still with his head creased in a frown but his eyes bright he said..
" What is the best way to keep her broody until then ?"
" She isn't very big so we will only need a few eggs ...maybe 5 "
I promised I would save him some ' just in case'
Yesterday evening I had a phone call to say the house is made and yes please could he have some eggs and collect them after school today.
So I have a box of Welsummer eggs waiting for him. I just hope they are fertile and hatch successfully.
I think I will be more anxious about these than any of my own.