Tuesday, March 30, 2010

"Chicken one day, feathers the next” - unknown

Chickens! Chickens! Chickens!
Everywhere on the farm, we got us some chickens! Mari says we are now chicken wranglers! I like to think of myself as the chicken whisperer! (ha - famous in my own mind!) In all seriousness, I have FINALLY gotten the chicks I've been waiting for for 4 years - no make that my whole life! And I've got PLENTLY! We started out with 32 until Mari called from TSC Monday and told me they had 3 different breeds we'd been wanting - Silver Wyandotte, barred Plymouth Rock, and Buff Orpington.....which means we are up to 44 birds...added to the already Rhode Island Reds, Bantams, and Cornish. 17 birds have been set aside as broilers (Dont pass out! Yes we are eating 17 of these cute fuzzy birds! - Dont worry they are quickly becoming gangly and not as cute, and we have some roosters in the mix that aren't quite as friendly as well and we cant have a bunch of roosters!) We did buy some straight run - meaning they try to give you all pullets (hens) but your not guaranteed that from the hatchery...and we did get some roosters...they are hilariously brave and funny. But when you sit with them for a bit and play with them they tame down quickly. Ummm yeah you knew already I was gonna play with the birds! Mari and I (yep we are co-owners - take that back - co-chicken-farmers) handle the birds daily so they will be friendly and easy to handle. We have been working on the temporary coop(s) that will house them until the yard and big coop is built (which will be started on within the next 2 weeks). The chicks and working on the coops have been a lot of fun, and spending time with Mari has been good, getting us both out and busy has been good for us both. Fun work - is great, gets your mind off of the mundane work you do every day! And now with the awesome sunshine out and your fingers and toes not freezing its been wonderful for the spirit! So here are some chick pics! They are growing soooo fast! And already their personalities are beginning to slowly emerge...you can tell which ones are calm and which ones are more aggressive and curious. BOY! They grow sooo fast! The first ones we bought (and we havent lost a single chick by the way!!!!!!) are already beginning to fly and getting their feathers, a couple are getting feathers all over even! Enjoy the pictures!
^Mari holding a Rhode Island Red Chick^
^This is Leah's little Bantam Chick^ she has named him her "Chicken - Coop" (Come on - get it? Gotta love her animals names!) These little chickens are so cute, they are the feathered leg chickens they have little "feathered boots" and are sooooo adorable, they will be small like Pepper - the chicken I have now.
These are the first 32 chicks we bought at about a week old...Rhode Island Reds, Cornish Rocks, and Bantams. We had to sit in the coop in order to catch them, the walls of the coop are too tall to reach in, Levi couldn't stand it that he couldn't get to "his new chickens and play too" so he had to look over and watch"
This is Doug's Chicken ^ which he has named "Chicken Wing" a little calm Rhode Island Red...Praying it is a hen...Roosters are notoriously mean so we wont keep him if he is a rooster...so far this little chick is very calm and we have him in with the small Bantams and the new chicks and there is no problems even tho' Chicken Wing is bigger.
We have moved the 17 birds that are MUCH bigger and the ones that we are using as broiler chickens into the bigger coop. They immediately seemed to act like big birds, taking dust baths, scratch, fly around....sooo funny. I got in the coop and the little roosters ran up on me and challenged me even! Too funny, but they also calmed right down and made friends right away, feeding them out of your hand works well and handling them I hope helps when the time comes to catch them to send them off to butcher!
Pepper was interested for all of a minute! The chicks however wanted more of her attention...she really could care less...
Here is one of the Bantams, you can see his little feathered legs!
And here are the new chicks! The Buff Orpingtons, Barred Plymouth Rocks, and Silver Wyandottes. They are in with the Bantams and a couple Rhode Island Reds that we think are pullets that are very calm and smaller that we had gotten later...its getting easier to tell the pullets from the roosters now, and we know we have at least one Bantam rooster, we will keep him for sure....and all the new chicks we just got are pullets..hope the little reds here are pullets too.So...what does Pepper think of all these new birds? Not much...she did get all broody, finally found her nest of eggs she had been hiding, and had about a carton of eggs underneath her, which I had to throw out, and now she moved her nest and I once again cant find any eggs....sigh....so now I'm putting her up at night, she is mad at me...but I have an old egg marked in a nesting box hoping she will lay in there. So far not working. She is too smart for her own good.
If they all have Peppers temperament and personality I'll be tickled pink! BUT...not counting my chickens before they hatch!
***King update*** The last two days he has bounced back again...I hate doing any updates on him cause as soon as I do he then takes a turn in the opposite direction and I'm afraid thats how its going to be from here on out. He is in good spirits the last two days, the weather has been warmer and this week its going to progressively get warmer into the 80's Friday and Sat...so that will do wonders for his arthritis. He is almost done with his antibiotic, and I'm still gonna talk to the Vet to come out the end of the week, would like to wait until my daughter is home so she can be here when he comes. I do believe this is how things will be for King, good days and bad days, a roller coaster with highs and lows, until its his time to go.
Thanks for your advice, good wishes and prayers....you all KNOW how much I appreciate your love and support!


  1. Well, that is pretty darn cool, good for you! The hubby is going to build a new chicken house for me then we will have meat and laying chickens. I used to have some until the fox got to them. But they won't get the new ones. Have fun.

  2. Chicks are a lot of fun. Most of ours are friendly. Even ones we've gotten as adults have gotten friendly as they get used to us.

  3. The chick kids are very cute. I'll cone and see them when they start laying eggs. Ha!

  4. WOw...tines of chicks!! Very cool!
    I know it is tough with King..you are doing the best for him and he will tell you when the time is right. He is sooo special Rae!
    I LOVE that picture of you with the Chicken! Adorable, simply adorable!
    Love to you

  5. oh my...need spell check for comments..TONS of Chicks!

  6. I'm loving the new chicks....I also got some ducks! OMG I just couldnt help myself for 2 1/2 weeks they have been quacking my name! And I am so glad I did! They are hilarious!!!!!!! I'll post pictures soon!!!! They are funnier than chickens ever thought about being!


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