Friday, May 30, 2014

Chicks in Tha' House!

Well, the garage, really.

I have two broody hens--Buttercup, a Buff Brahma, and Portia, a Silver-Laced Brahma (I think).  Buttercup is in the garage; Portia is still in the coop. I didn't have any problems moving Buttercup, but Portia raised a ruckus when I tried to move her to a broody pen in the garage.  So this will be an experiment of sorts to see if leaving a hen in the coop to hatch eggs works. To be careful, I only let Portia have two eggs.  Buttercup ended up with 16--usually, a hen sits on 12-15 eggs, but Buttercup kept stealing eggs.

Buttercups chicks began hatching on May 28.  Only two hatched that day, so I'm letting her sit for a couple more days to see if any other eggs hatch. If she gets off the nest or kicks the eggs out, I'll remove them, but I don't think I'm going to let her sit on them past Sunday.  Those unhatched eggs are going to be ripe!

Here's a fuzzy pic of the first two chicks:

I think they might be Bantams, which makes sense since the only "working" roosters I have are Bantams--two Cochins and two Japanese Bantams.  The Cochins have feathered feet, as does Buttercup.

Here's Buttercup with one of the chicks:

I don't know who laid these eggs, either! Buttercup stole so many eggs that I'm not sure many of these are hers.  No telling what I'll get, so this is something of an adventure.

I usually buy my chicks.  In fact, I had just bought six chicks--four Golden Sex Links (Comets), one Red Sex Link, and a Barred Rock Rooster (regular size, not Bantam).

I'm running out of room. I have five coops. I need to consolidate these and make one big chicken yard! They mostly get along, so a large coop would make more sense and certainly save me time in the morning.

That's a project for later!

One thing--hatching chicks is wonderful.  I love seeing them interact with their mother, and I love hearing her "talk" to them.  It's an amazing experience.

Ah, adventures in chicken keeping.  I think everyone should do this.  Not only do you get fresh eggs, but you get hours and hours of free, funny entertainment.  You should try it!