Sunday, July 29, 2012

Chick update

The third egg did not yield a chick.  And now one of the four due to hatch August 7 is gone.  So there is a chance for three more chicks in August.

This whole process is not something you do for profit - only for fun.  My friend Misty has a separate coop for brooding hens, and I can see why.  I am sure the percentage of chicks to eggs would be much greater under those circumstances. 

Last year, out of 21 eggs there were four chicks.  And three of those were roosters!  The value of those eggs was nearly $8, and I can buy a three-day-old pullet for $3.  Like I said, this is not for profit, just for fun.

I just came in from seeing the little ones again.  They are very tame and enjoy being held.  I'll be bringing them in the house and putting them in a box in the atrium very soon.  Right now, every time I put out some feed Goldie takes it, so I know they will have to be separated soon.  In the meantime, I am happy to see them cuddled under their mama's wings.

Friday, July 27, 2012

They've arrived!

I counted the days wrong - eggs went under Goldie on July 7, and I added 21 days.  But I should have counted the 7th as a day!

I put eight eggs, dated, under Goldie and hoped for the best.  It was the second time she went broody.  The first time, a raccoon got into the Moop and ate all of her eggs.  I thought it was the other chickens, but it was a raccoon, who was living inside the engine cover.  That is a whole other story, for another day.

Anyway, when I got home from market today and went out to pick up eggs, I heard this plaintive peeping.  I looked around and found one chick in very bad shape on the floor.  It had fallen out of the nest, and it looks as though one of the other hens may have picked at its neck.  But it is still alive.  I put it with Goldie and continued to hunt for the source of the peeping.  At last!  There it was!! And it is a Campine!  :)  :)  :)  I put it with mama, then went to the house for a big, deep box.

There were only three eggs remaining with 7-7 marked on them.  Clay found an egg on the floor one day.  Then I found a few more on subsequent days.  Here is how it has been going down.  Miss Blue, who lays blue eggs, was apparently getting in the nest when Goldie would make her occasional trip to the water and food.  She would throw an egg on the floor and then lay one of her blue eggs in the nest as a replacement.  What a bitch!

When I was down to only four eggs marked 7-7 (one of them was blue), I pulled four more eggs from other nests and marked them 7-18.  So these four eggs are now due to hatch on August 7th. 

By yesterday, there were only three eggs left marked 7-7, the blue one also gone.  But Miss Blue had dropped a fresh blue egg in the nest.  Sorry, honey, you should have left well enough alone. 

Here are the pics.  One is starting to crack, so that means it has a chick in it also.  What a miracle that all three remaining eggs were fertile!  I just checked them again.  The little one is walking around and peeping.  I think it will be okay with some TLC.  The egg is still sitting there, no chick emerging yet.  Was hoping to get a pic of it, but I'm leaving here in about a half hour, so it had better hurry.

The chick has cracked the shell.

This little one is not in good shape.  :(

This appears to be full-blooded Campine

All three in one pic

The healthiest, a Campine

The Campine

The Campine

Mama Goldie with both chicks