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2010 Baby Chicks - New Photos

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Project by Radicalfarmergal posted 1459 days ago 2117 views 1 time favorited 39 comments Add to Favorites Watch

To raise chicks without an incubator, you have to watch your chickens until one turns “broody”. A hen is broody when she decides that she is going to remain on the nest until eggs hatch. This can be frustrating if you don’t want chicks or if you don’t have a rooster (eggs are not fertile), because the hen will simply stop laying eggs until she gives up and that can take weeks. During that time she will only rarely leave the nest to briefly eat or drink and she can lose quite a bit of weight. If you have a limited number of nest boxes, it can frustrate the other chickens, especially if that nest box was their favorite. (Yes, my hens will line up to use their favorite nest boxes, even when there are several seemingly identical nest boxes available.) It can also be frustrating when you have a rooster and you want chicks and none of your hens want to brood! Like gardening, raising chickens constantly reminds me to relinquish my illusions of control.

Luckily, we have a very gentle Black Australorp who became broody near the end of June. We made a nest for her in the barn and slipped eleven eggs under her. We did not use a light to check to see if the eggs were fertile, we just tried our luck. We provided food and fresh water very close to the nest so that she could still eat and drink without endangering the eggs and my sons would frequently bring her treats from the garden, such as grubs, beetles and raspberries. Twenty-one days later, we had three chicks; four more hatched the following day.

I took about 75 photos before I could get six that were somewhat decent pictures. The chicks do not remain still for the camera. I hope you enjoy them.

The bright yellow chick will be a Delaware/Buff Orpington Mix.

The buff colored chick will be pure Buff Orpington.

The five darker chicks will be a mix of Buff Orpington and either New Hampshire Red or Barred Rocks.

Although the photo is a bit unclear, I included the one where two chicks are sharing a Sea Buckthorn berry; they consider the berries to be a real treat.

*

Added in September, 2010
The chickens have grown so I thought it would be fun to post a few photos now that they are about two months old. This first photo makes me laugh. They look like I caught them planning some sort of mischief:

2010 Chicks

Eating, a favorite pastime:

2010 Chicks

The chicks are perching now:

2010 Chicks

My youngest son is working on taming and naming them all. In this photo, he is holding Rusty.

2010 Chicks

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout



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Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

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39 comments so far

View Iris43's profile

Iris43

3793 posts in 2195 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1459 days ago

Oh my goodness, Robin. They are adorable! Is there anything cuter than a fluffy, baby chick? Are your boys thrilled with their new members of the family?

How I wish I could have a couple chickens. They really are nice, useful and interesting.

I don’t suppose you can tell yet if any of them are roosters?

-- 'To plant a Garden is to believe in Tomorrow'

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Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1459 days ago

There are experts who can tell the sex of a chick, Iris, but I certainly cannot. I will know when they are a few months old and they start to crow. : ) One of the first thing my sons and I do in the morning is go visit the chicks. They are quite tame and let my sons hold them. Sometimes they will snuggle down in their hands and close their eyes. The mother hen is very tolerant of people who want to admire her chicks. She never pecks or tries to chase people away.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

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Iris43

3793 posts in 2195 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1459 days ago

Robin, what a great experience for you and your boys. :)

BTW, I love the contended look on the hen’s face. LOL

-- 'To plant a Garden is to believe in Tomorrow'

View jroot's profile

jroot

5045 posts in 2195 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1459 days ago

Wow. What a great learning opportunity for the boys. I never had any of mine go broody. Mama looks very happy. I bet she’ll be protective, too.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

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TopamaxSurvivor

192 posts in 1868 days
hardiness zone 7b

posted 1459 days ago

Great project for the kids :-) Where did you get the cross bred eggs?

View maples's profile

maples

45 posts in 1619 days

posted 1459 days ago

too cool, I have 12 chickens that were day olds back in april, so hoping to get eggs starting about a month or so?? no rooster yet, but it wont be long until the “free” ads start coming out in the paper,, once they stop being “cute” for sopme they get rid of them, I miss my eggs, as something got all my chickens last fall, so I had to start over.. but its still fun, goo dluck with your chicks, pat

View sharad's profile

sharad

1620 posts in 1782 days
hardiness zone 11

posted 1459 days ago

Fantastic story. Robin your observation, pictures and narration are so pleasing, as usual. Your patience in taking 75 pictures to give us good pictures is admirable. I have never reared chicks but repent for not having done it, at least for fun. Nutritionwise is there any difference bet fertile and unfertile eggs?

Sharad

-- Bagwan-- “If someone feels that they had never made a mistake in their life, then it means they have never tried a new thing in their life”.-Albert Einstein

View daltxguy's profile

daltxguy

882 posts in 1663 days
hardiness zone 4a

posted 1458 days ago

Sheesh, no wonder Mr. Orpington’s first name is ‘Buff’
Mighty fine of Ms. Australorp to raise everyone else’s babies and all good looking kids.

Great story, Robin.

Is it normal for chckens to go broody in the middle of summer?

-- Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves. - Thoreau

View stefang's profile

stefang

393 posts in 1544 days
hardiness zone 7

posted 1458 days ago

Cute chicks and a great story that I learned a lot from. It reminded me of when I was 8 or 9 years old and we lived just outside Los Angeles, I used to buy chicks at the local hardware store and raise them.

-- Mike the reluctant gardening assistant of Lillian

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1458 days ago

Thanks for visiting my chicks. I will tell them that they have many admirers. : )

Bob, our rooster is a Buff Orpington but we have a variety of heavy breed, brown egg laying hens. I can tell the breed of the hens by the chicks’ coloring.

Pat, I hope you get some fresh and delicious eggs soon. What breed of hens do you have?

Sharad, to my knowledge there is no nutritional difference between fertile and infertile eggs. I believe my hens’ eggs are more nutritious than what I can buy because the chickens are pasture raised. Living in the pasture all summer, they eat grass and herbaceous plants, insects and even small mammals and amphibians. This diet more closely resembles the omnivorous diet they evolved to eat. In the winter, they eat mostly grain but I try to supplement it with greens when I can and they can dig down and find insects that live in the deep bedding even in the winter.

Steve, you always make me laugh. My hens tend to go broody only in the middle of the summer. They never seem interested in the spring.

Mike, what did your family do with the chickens after you raised them?

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View Iris43's profile

Iris43

3793 posts in 2195 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1458 days ago

Oh dear….do we want to know what Mike’s family did with the chickens they raised? :{

-- 'To plant a Garden is to believe in Tomorrow'

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Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1458 days ago

You are right, Iris, maybe I shouldn’t ask.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View donjoe's profile

donjoe

220 posts in 1551 days
hardiness zone 7

posted 1458 days ago

Takes me back many decades to my childhood. We always had chickens for the eggs. Have’nt had any as an adult though. When the chicks would hatch out they became so tame that they would follow us around like the dogs in the yard. Very nice story and wonderful photos.

-- Donnie in sunny South Carolina

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1458 days ago

Thanks, Donnie, good memories. Most of the hens let my youngest son carry them around the yard. He hand feeds them grubs and insects and they will race over when they see him just to see if he has a treat for them. He started carrying chickens when he was just three and the chickens were half as big as he was.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

192 posts in 1868 days
hardiness zone 7b

posted 1458 days ago

Kind of cool to hear stories of kids growiing teh way I did :-)) Momn took a picture of my Lil’ Sis carrying two kitnes by the tails when she was about 3.

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1457 days ago

Chickens, goats and gardening add to my already busy days, but when I see my children learning and enjoying them, or when we get to eat the food we grew and harvested ourselves, it makes it so worth it. When I was around ten years old, our cat gave birth to kittens right in my bed where I was sleeping! It is an experience of love and trust I will never forget. I can just imagine the picture of your little sister. : )

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

14669 posts in 2565 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1457 days ago

how wonderful. Congrats on the new farm members.

Our neighbour’s chickens have new chicks as well. Every day, Rick goes to visit his buddy and comes home to say, “Awww.. you should see the chicks. They are so cute.” Every day, two-three times a day :)

Last night I said, “do you want to raise your own?” The answer: a quick “no”.

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

View Bon's profile

Bon

7374 posts in 2345 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1457 days ago

How lucky you are to have chicks.They are so cute.Will you be keeping them all and adding them to your brood.

-- Bon,Hastings,Ont.....zone 5a....Always room for one more

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1457 days ago

We will keep the hens and (shhhh!) eat the roosters.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View Bon's profile

Bon

7374 posts in 2345 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1457 days ago

I think I would be praying for a lot of roosters for the freezer.(lol)

-- Bon,Hastings,Ont.....zone 5a....Always room for one more

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1456 days ago

Bon, they are delicious, especially when they are only a few months old. Slaughtering them and preparing them for cooking is not my favorite activity, but I have taught myself how to do it.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View Iris43's profile

Iris43

3793 posts in 2195 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1456 days ago

Oh-h…. :(.......I know, I know. It’s a fact of life…but….....

I bet they will taste good! :)

-- 'To plant a Garden is to believe in Tomorrow'

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

192 posts in 1868 days
hardiness zone 7b

posted 1456 days ago

I have never done it with chickens, but it should work. Rather than pick the feathers, I always skinned pheasant and grouse. Won’t work on ducks. It only takes about 30 seconds instead of 30 hours :-))

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1455 days ago

Bob, that is what I do. I skin them rather than pluck them. It works pretty well, particularly when I am doing only one or two at a time. It takes me much longer than 30 seconds though. Maybe I need a better teacher?

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View chris king's profile

chris king

2 posts in 1455 days
hardiness zone 2b

posted 1455 days ago

i just added these website i love chickens i have two ducks and 6 barred rock chickens they are so cute

-- ck

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1453 days ago

I am glad you liked the chicks, Chris. They are growing so fast. They zip around in the garden and are becoming impossible to catch. Fun to watch though.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View chris king's profile

chris king

2 posts in 1455 days
hardiness zone 2b

posted 1451 days ago

i have 2 ducks what species they are well they are teal ducks well got to go to splashtown going to ride they all new stingray racer

-- ck

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Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1450 days ago

Sounds like a great place to go on a hot summer day.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View Al_PG's profile

Al_PG

95 posts in 1769 days
hardiness zone 3

posted 1435 days ago

Great post Robin. If your digital camera’s has a sport mode try that for the fast action pictures.

-- Alan - Prince George

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Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1435 days ago

Thanks for the advice, Al. I have a old digital camera with very few features. I have had it almost ten years, and it just doesn’t take close ups or action shots well. I have asked for a new camera for my birthday, maybe I will get one. Any recommendations?

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

192 posts in 1868 days
hardiness zone 7b

posted 1435 days ago

You can’t go wrong with a Nikon SLR. They are tops for anyone who knows anything about photography. I don’t know why the others even exist. Nikon is that far out in the lead. Even their low end starter SLRs have unbelievable features and cpability. Sorry i don’t know anything about their Cool Pix, but I’ll bet it is great too, knnowing Nikon ;-)

View jroot's profile

jroot

5045 posts in 2195 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1434 days ago

I LOVE my Lumix by Panasonic. It has a 12x optical zoom lens by Leica which is amazingly clear. I can switch to macro from long distance by merely focusing on something new. There is a NO BRAIN option on it as well which does all the thinking for the user. I have had several SLR cameras including Nikon, – at twice the cost and 4x the weight. This little Lumix, I can clip onto my belt and it is always there when I need it.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

View Radicalfarmergal's profile

Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1434 days ago

Thank you for your recommendations, Bob and Jroot, that is where I will start my search.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View Greenthumb's profile

Greenthumb

2287 posts in 2385 days

posted 1434 days ago

just awesome. Loved it when I had them and so cool to watch.

-- just one more rock, and the garden is done ; )

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

192 posts in 1868 days
hardiness zone 7b

posted 1434 days ago

Jroot, did you compare the Lumix to Cool Pix? I that is one down side of SLR’s, size:-( They are primarily for camera nuts and photograthers :-)) Sometimes I wish I had a pocket camera like my wife’s..

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Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1416 days ago

I added some photos in the project description if anyone wants to see the little chicks as they grow up.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

14669 posts in 2565 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1415 days ago

sniff.. sniff…. the babies grow up so fast

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

View Iris43's profile

Iris43

3793 posts in 2195 days
hardiness zone 5a

posted 1414 days ago

Love the new pictures, Robin. The chicks are certainly beginning to look like chickens…..and the pic of your son with the one on his arm is priceless. I will try to find the picture I have of my youngest with his pet chicken to show you. I think he was about the same age in the picture as your boy is now. It will be a cute comparison.

-- 'To plant a Garden is to believe in Tomorrow'

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Radicalfarmergal

4293 posts in 1828 days
hardiness zone 5b

posted 1414 days ago

Iris, I would love to see the photo of your son when he was little. I am glad you and Debbie enjoyed the photos.

-- "...I have nothing against authorities as such; I am only in favor of putting a question mark after just about everything they say." Ruth Stout

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