Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Peep Peep!

About a month ago, I decided I wanted to let one of my broody hens sit on some eggs so I could have a baby chick. Charlie started sitting on them for a couple of days and then I had the bright idea to go to something called Conroe Trade Day. Conroe Trade Day takes place twice a year and it is NOT at all like Canton Trade Days. Instead of cute stuff for the home and yard, you will find all the country people out selling random animals to the other country people that show up.

On the way to church I saw Trade Days were going on and I mentioned to Joe that I really wanted to go look for some Ameraucana chicks. These are the types of hens that lay blue and green eggs. Joe just nodded (and I am sure expected me to forget about it by the time church was over). I left church with visions of green and blue eggs in my future so reminded Joe that I really wanted to "just go look". After some convincing that I just wanted to look and a promise that I would not want to get any other animals except maybe one or two chicks Joe was on board to go with me to the Trade Days.

At Trade Days there were loads of animals, country folk, and more. After winding our way through, I finally found 1 booth that was selling a type of chick that would produce the colorful eggs for the low cost of 4 for $10. How could I resist? We got all 4 (it would have cost more per chick to get only 2) and headed for our traditional after church bbq with peeping chicks in a box on the console.

Once at home, I put the chick in with Charlie (who was sitting on eggs) because Charlie was in a protected cage area. The set up was only supposed to be temporary but it ended up lasting a couple of days. By the time I got around to moving the chicks Charlie had morphed into a mother hen protecting her flock. Instead of separating mother and children, I moved the eggs to my other broody hen named Pomp.

Pomp sat on her eggs diligently in the corner of the coop. She did not leave her precious eggs for a second. Then Friday night I went to examine her eggs and saw that one had started to hatch.

I heard peeping, saw the beak and with all my willpower, put the egg back under Pomp and went inside for the night. I went back out at about 2AM anxious to find a new chick and still nothing... The next morning I woke up and went straight to the coop to find the cutest little chick in the world.

Adorable right?

Now I have never had any animal under my watch have a baby before and so this was a huge moment. I did a song a dance in the coop and ran inside to grab my camera.

Both of the mother hens are bantams (bantams are about 1/2 the size of a normal chicken) and the chicks they are raising a full size chickens. Basically the chicks are quickly going to be bigger than their mommas which is pretty funny to watch.

Now I have 5 chicks in the coop, 0 roosters that I know of (had to get rid of the 2 after they were mean to my chicks), 2 WAY protective momma hens and several other hens that are happy to teach the new arrivals the pecking order.

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