Friday, May 23, 2014

Mother Hen

It's official, today I became a mother hen! Jim and I have been getting ready for months. We put the final touch on the brooder this week and it's quite a sight to behold! Overkill is the word that comes to mind. At least the little ones will be safe and warm.

Yesterday I picked up the shavings for the bedding and came home to get things ready. I laid an inch of shavings at the bottom of the brooder, filled up the water + feed bowls and turned on the heat lamp to get things up to 95℉. The best laid plans of mice and men often have to be adjusted. So adjust we did up to the eleventh hour.

At 11hr30 I drove to H H Goode and Son. Would the order be in? I put my hand on the door handle to the feed store and even before turning it I heard the answer to my question as a loud wave of peeping reached me. What a sound! I walked in and saw a dozen chick boxes containing tiny, yellow, downy balls. I soon found our order. With glee I picked up the parcel and drove home with the heat cranked up to the maximum setting with the little ones peeping all the way. 

Ours are not yellow, downy balls.  Ours are rusty Rhode Island Red x Columbia, Black Sex Link and Plymouth Barred Rock. They are adorable. As I pulled them out of their carton, I gently dip their beaks in their drinking water to let them know that it's there. Immediately they understand and start drinking. And then I introduced the feed. And they also know what to do. Instinct.

Rhode Island Red x Columbia Pullet
Plymouth Barred Rock Pullet
Black Sex Link Pullets
I can't believe that they were hatched just yesterday. It's seems cruel to pull them away from their mothers so soon. Ainsi va la vie! As I write this, the little darlings are happily pecking at the feed and drinking. My Storey's Guide to Raising Chickens talks about happy chirps and unhappy chirps. I am definitely hearing happy sounds. How quickly these little ones are teaching me.

1 comment:

  1. You will easily be able to pull off a 1 mile diet, never mind a 100 mile one.
    I wonder if the eggs will actually taste different? Probably not. All the same terroir!