February 13, 2005
i hate snakes
It's interesting that I ran across this post right after I wrote about chickens. Webb's Seed & Feed (just outside of Springfield, Georgia) sold sweet feed, dried corn, chicken feed, fertilizer, insecticide, herbicide, cross-ties, landscape timbers, cinder block, fence-posts, fence wire, and just about every other supply I needed on the mini-farm, so I shopped there regularly, at their big warehouse.
Webb's also sold WOODEN EGGS.
I am not making THIS up, either. These were eggs made out of wood (or wood machined to LOOK like an egg) that you could put in a hen's nest to encourage her to lay. Hens don't like an empty nest. The eggs served a secondary purpose, too.
I don't know of ANYONE who ever kept a lot of chickens who didn't eventually have a problem with snakes. The slithering bastards will crawl into the coop, eat biddies and swallow an egg in a heartbeat, the thieving shits. Some of those egg-eating snakes get BIG, too. I hated them and killed as many as I could catch, which was quite a few.
But the dumb bastards will ALSO swallow a wooden egg in their blind gluttony. Guess what happens then? The snake can't digest it, it plugs up his digestive tract and kills him graveyard dead. You may lose a 10-cent wooden egg out of the deal, but you get rid of a snake, too.
Yeah. This Cracker boy has bought wooden eggs before and used them to kill snakes.
I don't know how, but as soon as you mentioned wooden eggs I knew what they'd be for.
Well, the part with the hens, not the part with the stupid snakes who can't tell a wooden egg from a real one.
My grandmother in Arkansas (some 55 years ago) used to put wooden and GLASS eggs in her chicken house. The glass eggs were about the same construction as light bulbs. I assume they were meant to break and cut the hell out of the snake's innards
My grandparents too. All the way back to the 30s!!!
But ... I like snakes. I must have liked them a whole lot - I married one.
It's a "Nest Egg." And the snake thing is just a fringe benefit to their real purpose.
Chickens are by nature sneaky shits, and will hide their eggs in the most amazing and often stupid places imaginable. If you plan on collecting up these eggs for breakfast or such, you want them in a central location, not strung out all over the chicken yard in every clump of grass or pile of weeds.
So you put a wooden or glass Nest Egg into each empty nest. The chickens will believe that they actually laid that fake egg, and will procede to lay all of the rest of their clutch right there with it. Makes hunting eggs a lot more pleasant in the morning.
And my sister has Easter Egg chickens on her hobby farm. You're right about the eggs. Best tasting eggs I've ever had.
My family liked to use porcelin doorknobs. I was told that they'd occasionally find a dead snake wrapped around a tree with the doorknob sticking out of the remains.
Great nest eggs.