'The hen-wife should visit every nest, and collect the eggs every day; and the time for collecting the largest number of eggs and disturbing the poultry the least, is in the afternoon between 2 and 3 o'clock, before the birds begin to retire to roost. A nest-egg should be left in every nest, as it is an established fact, that hens prefer to lay in nests containing eggs, to those which are empty. Eggs are most conveniently collected in small hand-baskets and a short light ladder will afford easy access to nests situated above reach from the ground. Nine eggs weigh about a pound.'
The hen-wife must have had a good memory and been able to recognise the egg that she had left from the previous day, or had upon her person a quilly pen to mark the aforesaid egg, methinks! Sylvia xx