Friday, July 29, 2011

Chicks on the Move

The chicks have outgrown their original brooder and moved to their new home. While the inside of the coop is not too much bigger than their previous space, they now have a fenced yard which adds quite a lot of space for stretching their wings.

Ancona chick, 4 weeks old
While they were pretty hesitant at first to enter their new yard, it didn't take too long for the more adventurous in the bunch to head into unknown territory.

Black crossbred banty chick, 5 weeks old
The little black banties are a week older than the rest and most of their chick fluff has now been replaced by real feathers.

Speckled Sussex chick, 4 weeks old
The Speckled Sussex chicks have also replaced much of their down.
White Orpington Chick, 4 weeks old
Light Brahma chick, 4 weeks old
The White Orpingtons and Light Brahmas seem to have feathers on their bodies, but their heads are still fluff.
Partridge Cochin chick, 4 weeks old

Free hatchery mystery chick, 4 weeks old
But, oh my goodness, the Partridge Cochins and free mystery bird are pretty pitiful this week.  I know the Cochins will be very handsome birds when they are grown, but the mystery bird?  Hmmm, I guess only time can answer that question!
Until next time, may time be kind to your countenance!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Growing Up

It did not take long for the baby chicks to outgrow their stock tank.  In fact they were only in it for a day before I tipped it on its side to give them more room.  The active chicks were constantly running over the smaller, weaker ones and interrupting their naps.  Poor little sleepyheads!  I used heavy cardboard to slowly increase their space until they had the full run of the 6'x10' enclosure after several days. 
Mortality has seemed fairly high as I have lost a total of 7 chicks, most within the first week.  Two of those were the white Cochins I was concerned about and also lost two of the Mille Fleur bantams.  The rest were a variety of breeds.  The light went out on Tuesday night of this week, which happened to be a night it chilled off somewhat and we got a little rain.  I nearly lost one of the Brahma banties then, but was able to get it rewarmed before it was too late.

Light Brahma
The slower growing breeds are still cute and don't look too awfully different than they did two weeks ago.

Silver Spangled Hamburg
But the faster growing chicks are just starting into their awkward stage.

Brown Leghorn
Baby chick fluff is being replaced by real feathers.

But the poor little black banties are about a week older than the rest and totally into the awkward, gangly, teenager stage.

White Orpington
Every adolescent wants to stand out from the crowd, and . . . .

Golden-Laced Wyandotte
spread their wings a little.

Dark Brahma and Silver Spangled Hamburg
And everyone likes to hang out and talk with their friends as they find their place in the world.

Until next time, may you be blessed with good friends to help through the awkward moments in life!