Fowl Facts – you never wanted to know

I was going to write a blog entitled “Fowl Play” with pictures of the silver beet the chooks almost destroyed and the cover I bought to protect the plants.

The silver beet may recover. I’ve put some new rainbow chard in here too.

And about how they scratch bark all over the place and obscure the path.

After the clean-up

And how netting is essential to keep them out of the tomato barrel.

The sight of something malformed in the nesting box this morning changed my focus – in more ways than one. I thought one of the chooks had expelled her intestines or ovary. Scroll down carefully…

When I’d recovered my equilibrium, bagged the article (which was dense and quite heavy) and put it in the bin, I began some internet research. First to see what is inside a chicken. I decided the chook must be (or have been) egg-bound. This page provided some information. This one provided pictures which matched my specimen, and information (and hilarious comments) to explain what it’s all about – although the dissection this person performed showed she had more stomach (oh, no, wrong choice of words, a body part!) than I have. More information than I really wanted to know too, confirming my initial instincts about how gross chooks can be – see my post Avian Invasion.

However, an even earlier post I wrote entitled Inexcusable Ignorance was about how little we know of living things. We prefer to remain ignorant. I never watch those reality tv shows about people’s ugly bodies and weird afflictions or surgeries. Anything graphic I avoid. Then I wonder what the surgeons dealt with as they fixed my broken leg and attached a titanium plate – probably with brute force and power tools – and when my varicose veins were operated on while I was blissfully under anaesthetic. The nurse at Mole Map, with whom I enjoyed an appointment yesterday, has to look at people’s moles all day.

Apparently in the UK, this malformed egg condition is called “lash”. This explains why. But which chook laid it? And should it be treated? Another subject to research on the internet as I learn more than I ever wanted to know about the inside workings of chickens.