Wednesday, July 20, 2016

And Then There Were 9 More

My little hen that hatched the one chick before ended up losing that chick and then she abandoned the nest and I cleaned it out. Then she started setting again on the eggs her and the others laid in that nest again. Because she had only hatched on the last time, I was not real worried when she set again and I was busy (and sick) and just kind of let her go and collected eggs out of the other nest.
Today I got a surprise when I went out. I thought I heard peeping and I was thinking well one more chick...and then looked in the nest when she got off and there were NINE chicks!
Unfortunately, she is in a community pen with several other chickens who killed her last chick so I had to get them out of there. I got my brooder, cleaned it out and then went looking for the brooder lights. I found two but only one worked. Unfortunately, you need a bulb that produces heat and the new bulbs don't really do that. I found one 60 watt one but it did not produce enough heat to get the brooder up to the 98 degrees that I needed (I would have settled for 95 if I could have gotten it but it wouldn't go past 85--not hot enough for the first couple weeks).  So I Phil and I went to town and picked up a new light and bulb.

I had already realized by then that the big fish tank I had in the spare room would make a better (bigger) brooder. It didn't take long to put it all together when I got home and go get the chicks. The hen still has 4 eggs so I will have to watch in case she gets them to hatch.

Anyway, here are the new babies. They were very happy with the food and water as there was none in the nest box.



11 comments:

  1. I have a screened porch off of our bedroom that stays ready for days like this! It's to the point where I remove the broody hen and her eggs so she can set in peace for the 21 days. There's THREE different broody pens/cages out there right now, but only a total of 6 babies of various ages from the spring settings. The roosters will be given away and the hens will be added to the flock when they are of sufficient size to run/protect themselves from the rest. Chickens are fairly easy as compared to other farm critters, aren't they?

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    1. They really are which is why I only have chickens right now. I wouldn't mind having a couple of rabbits, mainly just for the manure but I don't want to get too many animals again until I am better set up for them.

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  2. Just goes to show that you should never throw anything away, because it will come in handy one day, eh?

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    1. Yeah, but we are running out of space!

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  3. Cool looking chicks, I'm curious about the light. I have a neighbor whose hen has chicks and he has the hen and chicks together in a cage but, no light. They seem to being very well.

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    1. I have no hen in with these. The brooder light is a heat lamp so the chicks do not need a hen. It keeps the temp between 95 and 100. In a week I will lift the light some so it keeps it about 5 degrees cooler...same thing every week until they can go outside.

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  4. Gorgeous little things. I have stopped raising chicks under a lamp, preferring instead to let the mother chicken raise any eggs that hatch out. We have a little 'broody house' that we move mum, babies and any eggs left to hatch into as soon as the first chick or two hatch out.

    I find letting the mother chicken raise the chicks means the rest of the flock accepts the newcomers much more readily ... and of course it's less work for me ;-)

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    1. Yeah, I would like to do that but just am not set up for that. The fish tank has been the best brooder I have had. No fiddling with the temperature all the time because they have enough room to get away from the light.

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  5. Hello Becky. Just found your blog and signed up to follow. We also do many of the things you do to save money here in Illinois and love our chicken flock. Fun to watch and care for, yummy to eat. Can't wait to come back and read more of your posts.

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    1. I have never found chickens cheaper to raise than buying eggs in the store. You have to do it for other reasons.

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