Teenage Chicks

In a few short weeks my babies went from this cuddly bunch
To teenagers like this!

Its been a wild ride folks! This is my third time raising baby chicks. The first time, six years ago, I had NO idea what I was doing, and yet somehow it turned out fine. My second attempt was not quite as successful, three years ago. I ended up with a rooster which I had to rehome, and one of my hens died at two years of age. This time all four are hale and hearty and are growing at an alarming rate! I have named them finally now that I can tell them apart. Maisy and Daisy are practically twins and they are gentle and friendly. Little Nellie (short for Nervous Nellie) is rather distrustful and flighty, although she is sweet and possibly the prettiest. I haven’t been able to get a good photo of her because she won’t come too close. Maisy, however, has become fond of sitting on my shoulder, and Daisy prefers my lap.

Two golden girls!

Last but not least in any sense of the word, there is the one I suspect may be a rooster. I call him “Croakin’ Joe.” He talks like something is stuck in his throat. I really hope I get to revise that to “Croakin’ Josephine.” I will not really know for sure until he/she is a little older, but the comb and wattles are well developed compared to the others and his/her behavior is quite feisty. Yet sometimes he/she acts just like the others and can be just one of the girls. I will not know for sure until he attempts to crow, which will be a few weeks yet. I hope I do not have to rehome him if it is a roo. It all depends on how he integrates into the flock. I personally don’t think Henrietta will stand for a rooster in her flock.

Croakin’ Joe (left) nestles on top the playpen with Daisy.

Anyhow, these chicken kids are still residents of my basement and they are wearing out their welcome. They were due to go out earlier this week, but we got hit with a spell of cold, wet weather. Their little grow out coop is ready, and I promise to post photos when I get them moved outdoors. Stay tuned!

New Babies!

Baby Buffs, one week old

Last Saturday, I got four new baby Buff Orpingtons as the feed store in town. They are adorable!!! They have been healthy and active all week, and seem very happy in their temporary brooder which I have set up in the guest room bathroom so I can keep a close eye on them. They seem more active than the others I have raised in the past. Three years ago I was not so lucky. One ended up being a rooster, and one died last summer, so of that little flock, I have only one left (Buttercup) besides my Big Girls, who are six. I need to make them a birthday cake! Maybe tomorrow. Anyhow, these new little ones are already adept at flying out of the brooder if the screened top is off. I do not use a heat lamp. I use a heating plate that I got from Premier 1. http://www.premier1supplies.com

This creates an environment very similar to a mother hen, and the chicks adapt to it nicely. It is also less costly and not dangerous as a heat lamp. The chicks get natural daylight from the window and when it is dark they go under their little heat plate and sleep.

These chicks are supposed to be all pullets (female). The girl at the feed store also knew how to check their wing feathers and assured me that they are all pullets. We shall see! There is one little baby who has a more brown tint to her down and she is a feisty one. She is also the best and most daring flyer.

My little brownie on top the feed jar

I have not named them yet. I want to be able to tell them apart, and give them names that will go with their different personalities. But I have a list: Mayzie, Marigold, Nellie, Hermione, Rosie Mae, Hazel, SunDrop, Nellie, Daisy, Clover, Angel, Peaches, Goldie, Ginger. Which ones do you vote for? Tell me in a comment below!

I will keep you updated on the adventures of these four little girls. They are two weeks old today, and already are sprouting tail feathers as you can perhaps see in the photo below.