Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Surprise chicks

This morning when I went to let the chickens out of the barn I heard loud chirping.  I couldn't tell if it was wild birds or if it was coming from the barn.  After a little searching I found a tiny fluffy chick on a shelf about 7 feet off the floor.  More chirping led me to another chick between some boards to a stall door.  I took the chick down from the shelf and put it with the other.  That seemed to make them happy.  The mother was up in the barn loft sheltering some other chicks under her wings.  It appears there were 5 chicks in all, unfortunately I just found one of them dead outside the fence.  The other 4 look pretty sturdy and busy, looking for bugs and other food.  I'm guessing they're close to a week old from their fluffiness and behavior.  They've ventured pretty far today without their mom.  I wonder how I didn't know the mom was sitting on eggs for the past 3 weeks.

The video below shows the mom all fluffed up with her wings spread.  I don't know if that's her posturing to keep other chickens away or a place for the chicks to come hide when they need to.  I'm assuming the rooster with her is her partner.  It appears they're talking.  "Oh, aren't we so lucky?  Look what we made.  Shame what happened to little Festus."  We have 4 roosters but this is the one who stays near her.  He was in the loft today when I was looking for chicks.  I think he was warning me away.  Colleen, this is one of your roosters.

I kind of like that it was a surprise and I wasn't watching and waiting.  I hope these 4 survive and are all hens.

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