Posts tagged ‘chicks’

Only two

Out of 13 eggs we had 2 hatch yesterday (day 21). The little black one is a cross between the Barred Rock hen and Buff Orphington Roo, and the light one is from either a RIR hen or our red Sex-Linked. We added them in with the lot of 10 serama bantam chicks I got from my uncle and they’re doing just fine. I know this is a lot of chickens but they’re all straight run and some of the hens are going to my cousin down the road along with a couple of they layers that we have now. We’re planning to keep our flock between 6-8 (with 3 serama bantams counting as one full-sized hen for space purposes.) We will update if any more hatch, but it’s looking like just these two.

The ten serama bantams, a few of them are also silkie

The ten serama bantams, a few of them are also silkie

barred rock x BO

barred rock x BO

RIR x BO or Red sex-linked x BO

RIR x BO or Red sex-linked x BO

everybody together and doing fine. :-)

everybody together and doing fine. ūüôā

Hubby has spoken…the Roo must go…

and not because he isn’t beautiful and awesome, because he is both of those things.

Get a load of this handsome guy.

Get a load of this handsome guy.

It is because my husband recalls a conversation he had last year with one of our neighbors and how upset she was over the crowing of a rooster, not ours mind you. Although she’s given us the go ahead for 1-2 weeks. He’s sure that her kind-heartedness will not last much longer than that. As we intend to live here for most of our adult lives, we’d rather keep up good relations with the neighbors.

DSC_0561

He gets along well with the ladies.

DSC_0563

yes those are fruit loops in the background…left over from breakfast…alright they’re not fruit loops they’re imitation fruit loops.

In fact ever since his arrival less than a week ago our hens have been behaving themselves. No one is pulling butt feathers out of anyone else. (This has been quite the problem which I understand you’re now reading about for the first time, as the post I started on the subject never got posted….but I have several bald-butted chickens right now)

Our original plan of keeping Buffy for a week or two and hoping to get some fertilized eggs¬†for baby chicks and then eating him was a nice plan. But maybe not the best plan. We’ve floated the idea to¬†my in-laws (who are looking at starting a backyard flock of our own, yes I am that inspirational) of them taking Buffy and several of our hens and for us to keep a few hens¬†and the chicks. They’ve got a week to think about it (and build a coop or temporary shelter) or it’s the dinner table for Master Buffy. On the subject of¬†fertilization, I’ve cracked one fertile egg (yesterday) and once I crack two more I think we’ll leave them to brood. I like the idea of handling the chicks as I did before, but we’ll see if Mama (whoever that ends up being) is going to beat the crap out of me if I try it.

DSC_0566

See ya later Buffy…

They’re Beginning to look a lot like Chickens

At 5 weeks old our little chicks are really feathering out.¬† The Barred Rocks are the biggest and I’ll give you one guess who is smallest…

They’re starting to show some real personality and even Dinner is growing on me.

A few of them¬†figured out how to climb up into the apple tree and have been roosting away up there.¬† It was pretty cute, one of the Rhode Island Reds did it first and then it was the hot thing for about five minutes, all but the silkies were trying there little clawed foot at it.¬† My husband wonders if they’ll fly the coop climbing up so high into the tree…what do you think?

Now if they will just figure out how to get back into the coop by themselves I’ll be happy.

Dinner and Goldilocks enjoy the warm day from the bough of our teeny Apple tree.

Dinner, our SLW, is turning into one of the more beautiful birds.

Dinner snoozing.

Our Barred Rocks and Teeny Weenie, the partridge silkie, taking a nap.

Pretty Polly pecking for prizes.

Apparently the chickens aren’t the only ones who like Apple Trees.

The poor chickens were all huddled in the corner trying to stay away from the monster after their feed. The poor squirrel didn’t know how to get out, and about had a heart attack when my husband went in to chase it out of there.

And as a side question…doesn’t anybody know when we should harvest our lettuce?

 May 27, 2012  Side Yard Flock   11 Comments

You’re Grounded!

Honestly I can’t believe it took her this long to figure it out.¬† Our part russian blue part mutt cat Lucy finally figured out how to get into the chicken yard.¬† Considering she can climb the wooden posts from the ground all the way to our second floor deck, and any tree in our yard, the hop up and over our gate was easy-peasy.¬† My husband just happened to look out the window and see Lucy running madly around the chicken yard.¬† He rushed out and immediately she feared for her life.¬† She ran faster, trying to find a quick escape…what’s that?¬† a ramp? perfect!¬† She lept¬†up into the coop, terrifying Teeny Weenie, silkie¬†Willie-blue and our largest Barred Rock who were enjoying the heat lamp on our chilly May afternoon.¬† Thomas managed to shoo her out of the coop and finally scruffed her and hauled her into the house.¬† Lucy.¬† You’re grounded!

That is the closest you’re going to be getting to those chickens until they’re big enough to wallop you!

No worries, I checked the chickens and none seem injured (although they were all a bit shaken up) and came running to me chirping when I came out to the chicken yard.  Good thing my husband saw her when he did or Dinner may have been a feast for a feline instead of us.

 May 25, 2012  Side Yard Flock   2 Comments

They were not amused.

It rained today.¬† I didn’t think at 4 1/2 weeks my little chickies¬†are feathered out enough to weather the rain…but they sure wanted to.¬† They were not happy they had to stay in the coop all day and let me know it with their loud chirps when I came out a few times to check their food and water.

Did I make the right call?¬† I’m assuming when they’re full-grown I can open the door and if they want out they’ll go out, right?¬† Other birds are out (sometimes) in the rain, and I’m sure they’d be all about some worms when the rain lets up…so much to learn.

 May 21, 2012  Side Yard Flock   1 Comment
Categories: chickens Tags: , , ,

What in the World are my Chickens Doing?

Our always curious Easter Egger.

Ok all you chicken owners out there, help me out.¬† What the¬†heck are my chickens doing?¬† They will plop down onto their side, stick out their little drumstick and raise up one wing.¬† Are they just sunbathing?¬† My uncle says he’s never seen his chickens do this?¬† I spent a while outside hoping to catch a few with the camera.¬† What do you think?

Beanie also wanted me to take some shots with her in the chicken yard.¬† That girl loves to hang out with the chickies, but doesn’t want to pet them (only b/c she doesn’t want to have to go inside and wash with soap and water afterwards).¬† Her brother on the other hand would pet them for hours and hours if I let him.

You have to love how she works the camera. She just skipped around the coop saying, ooh, take one here…and here…and here…very adorable.

Beanie and Pretty Polly, my favorite little chicken. Several of them will tolerate being held, but I think she may actually enjoy it.

What are these crazy chickens doing? Barred Rock, Silkie, Silkie, Rhode Island Red…in some sort of crazy raise-the-wing line.

One of our blue silkies out enjoying the weeds.

Beanie snapped a pic of me over by the coop.

 May 20, 2012  Side Yard Flock   11 Comments

Venturing into the great wide somewhere

It only took a few minutes for the little girls to begin exploring their new home.

I think the is the most adorable photo of Teeny Weenie!

Monty watches the SLW and RIR hungrily.

Shiloh walks the perimeter of the chicken yard looking for a chink in the armor. Thankfully my hubby put up a mighty fine fence!We put them all up into the coop for the night, with their heat lamp and food and water.  The locks are all on and the only thing left to do is put in some roosts and paint the door (my daughter and father-in-law painted it for me, but I had them paint the wrong side so the chickens are enjoying a beautiful blue door while we, out here, are not)

 May 15, 2012  Side Yard Flock   Leave a comment
Categories: chickens Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

So we named her dinner.

Another week has passed and our little chickies are 3 weeks old.¬† My husband is so ready to reclaim his garage and get the birds outside, but we’re only halfway there.¬† He’s been beside himself without the use of his home gym.¬† We’ve made big strides in the coop department, well in the fencing department anyway.¬† All we have left to do are build and install the gates, and line the bottom section with chicken wire.¬† We should have time to get this done over the weekend, as my hubby is off Friday-Monday.

3 week old chicks chowing down

 

 

Most of the Chickens are doing well.¬† Teeny Weennie¬†is still…well…teeny weenie, just look at her next to the Rhode Island Red and across from our SLW. ¬†I don’t think she’s getting picked on, I often see the other chickens picking pieces of sawdust out of her feathers, but they don’t seem to be pecking HER and she doesn’t seem to mind so no need to intervene just yet, but the size difference is so pronounced, that I am keeping a close eye on things.

Dinner

 

 

The only other development in the chick department is the attitude problem of our Silver Laced Wyandotte.¬† She is rude.¬† She flys¬†at the other chickens, and she bit me yesterday.¬† Not just the poke poke¬†with the beak that some of them do, but she hauled off and open beak bit my thumb.¬† Let’s just say we picked the perfect name for her: Dinner.¬† Beanie hopes that Dinner turns out to be a boy, but she also said Dinner should eat a lot so will be¬†nice and fat for when we eat her.¬† My daughter cracks me up.¬† I don’t know if I would have been as¬†laissez-faire¬†about eating a chicken out of my garage when I was 4yrs old.

Beanie took a picture of Polly and me.

 

Polly is still my favorite girl, she climbs up onto my hand when I visit them, and is so sweet.

Our little Easter Egger is covered in crazy fluff, but is still the softest chick we have. She enjoyed the sunshine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I took our little Ameraucana¬†outside for a little bit of sunshine, but couldn’t let her down.¬† I know she hasn’t gotten enough feathers yet to stay warm in our sunny 50 deg weather.¬† (And our cat was winding around my ankles when I took this picture.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In other news Beanie has been doing well with her homeschooling.¬† She just finished the systems of the body (it helps that Dad is a Nurse Practitioner) and we’re starting a series on poetry and music.¬† She has written a few haikus and typed them up on¬†the computer, then we print them out and water-color paint over top of the poem. So far it has been a blast, I’m going to start with other types of poems next week, and we will compile them all into a poetry notebook.¬† Here is one of them.

Rainbows

they make me smile

orange yellow purple red

shining in the sky

She has also been working on a photo scavenger hunt. Here are a few of the photos that she took.

Something Green

Something shorter than she is.

something alive.

Something that is a circle.

Something red.

 May 10, 2012  Side Yard Flock   7 Comments

Chickens and Crickets and Worms OH MY!

So our baby chicks are two weeks old now, and I am just so shocked every morning when there is something new.¬† Human babies come out pretty much done, at least mine did,¬†but chickens…one morning they all had ears.¬† I mean one day fuzzy head, the next day ears.¬† It has been so crazy.¬† And the size difference is getting more obvious.¬† Our Silver Laced Wyandotte is the largest, and most inquisitive, of the flock.

SLW trying to figure out what the thing is that keeps flashing brightly at them.

They were not amused by the camera and all huddled together on one side of the stock tub.  Little Teeny Weenie there on the left side is almost half the size of some of the larger girls.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Teeny Weenie still lives up (or down) to her name, and one of our Rhode Island Reds (I’ve just now decided I should call her Polly) thinks she is a parrot and steps onto my finger then climbs up my arm to¬†nestle at my neck or attempt to sit on my shoulder.¬† As adorable as¬†it is this behavior does make me nervous as there is almost always a cat watching me hold these birds, and hoping, I’m sure, for one to jump away and into their mouths.

Polly sitting on my finger, showing off her new ear. Hopefully this one doesn’t end up being a rooster, she’s the sweetest one.

 

 

 

 

I thought it might be cute to put some dandelion greens into their tub today to get them used to eating greens, and then as an after thought I¬†grabbed a couple of worms from under our logs.¬†We’d put a cricket in the tub a few days earlier, but regreted it as some of the bigger chicks then thought the fluff on our silkies feet were bugs, so I thought maybe a worm would be okay.¬† The kids found out a few weeks ago¬†that the stumps we use out back at our fire pit are a breeding ground for worms. ¬†I could turn¬†one over every other day and find at least twenty. I prob should have grabbed twenty but then the chaos would have just lasted that much longer. When I first put the greens and worms in all the chickens backed up to stare, but as soon as one of our Barred Rocks figured it out it was all over.

What did you just put in here?

It’s mine, I found it first!

Chickens running madly while chirping with worms dangling out of their mouths while the others chased them, trying to steal the prize.¬† At one point there were 5 pieces of worm and 5 chickens doing the chasing and one Teeny Weenie trying desperately not to get trampled in the melee.¬† I picked her up and she huddled down, happy to be out of the line of fire.¬† After the worms were gone the big chicks still went around scratching the ground like mad…I wish they were a little bigger so I could let them outside, but I know this time is going to fly by, just like the last year has flown by.

Baby opens his first ever birthday gift. A puppy and a book from his Great Grandparents in MN.

Baby enjoys his birthday cupcake after Bubba and Beanie blow out the candle for him.

Our baby just turned one yesterday. ¬†I know that¬†if the last year felt like no time at all, these chicks are only going to be chicks for a few more blinks.¬† I’ll enjoy the time I have¬†while they still want to snuggle…chickens and kids.

 May 5, 2012  Side Yard Flock   Leave a comment

The Coop and The Flood

So we’ve been doing a ton of work on the coop this week.¬† We painted it and finally got locks that work (though some of them still need to be installed.)¬† My husband helped me mount the door and then he, Beanie, and I sanded it down so it would open and close smoothly.¬† The baby chicks are all doing well, we still hold each one every day and most of them are very calm once you get them in hand.¬† I gave them a few pieces of cantaloupe yesterday and they stood about six inches away in a little line staring at it.¬† Then one would jump over¬†the food¬†and rush back in line to wait for the fruit to launch a counter attack.¬† This lasted a few minutes and I got bored.¬† My daughter looked in about half an hour later and said “Hey they really like those melons!” Once they figured out how delicious they were it was pretty adorable.

My fantastic husband is 6'2" so that gives you an idea how tall this coop really is! Good luck you evil raccoons!

The floor is finished on the inside and will never look as good as it does right now!

 

Beanie helps sand the door frame.

So now that the coop is pretty much assembled and painted we’ve pushed our focus to the fence.¬† We’ve decided to make two separate yards for the chickens and rotate on a 4-6 month basis so we can give the ground a rest.¬† The kids were out helping with that too…my hubby has the patience of a saint with these little helpers.¬† ūüôā

Bubba and Beanie help Daddy tighten the fencing onto the poles.

 

 

Sinking the poles for the coop's fence.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beanie wanted a few pretty extra touches added¬†on to¬†the coop (she wasn’t a fan of it being brown) so I free-handed some tulips onto the nest box door.¬† She approved.

 

 

That’s our coop update.¬† One last little bit of excitement was our flood yesterday.¬† Now I just wanted to impart a teeny little piece of knowledge.¬† I am sure you’ve all heard that it only takes a second for a kid to drown in a bathtub, but what you may not know is that it takes less than a minute for a 2 1/2 yr old to dump half a bathtub’s worth of water onto the ground.¬† I also learned that it is extremely difficult to get water out of heating ducts, but not difficult for the water to drip from the heating ducts onto the drywall and into our downstairs light fixtures.¬† It was a…fun…evening.¬† I did get some great advice from my aunt when I called her and my uncle in a panic: “Maybe don’t let the toddler have a bucket as a bath toy.”¬† Touche.

ahhhh isn't that a pretty little coop. (Or as Bubba calls it, the Chicken House.)

...in case you didn't know what those oval things were, the ones sitting under the chickens...

 April 30, 2012  Side Yard Flock   7 Comments