And then there was six chicks in my bathroom…
I had been impatiently waiting for these sweet babies to hatch. We had pre-ordered them from a sweet grandmother who does this as a side hobby and gets help from her granddaughter and daughter. Since R worked 6 days straight he has a little time off this week and he went to pick them up for me on Monday because they were finally ready. I couldn’t wait to see these little fluff balls and I wasn’t disappointed.
These baby’s are so adorable! They are called sex-link chickens, which just means two different breads mixed together. They will be much bigger than the silkies/frizzle and better egg layers.
Now we have the teenage silkies/frizzle in the big bathtub and these little guys took over the small tin on the floor. There is such a personality difference in the two breeds. The silkies at that age (2 weeks old) were just pooping and eating machines. They weren’t that curious in the world around them. They would also kick up a fuss every time we reached in their bin. The sex-links are more curious. They watch when I come into the bathroom and listen to me while I talk. They are calmer about being handled. They love the piece of string that holds the roosting stick up in their container. They peck at it all day long. The silkies never even noticed the string. Such fun to see the differences between the two breeds.
The silkies are growing up so fast. They are roughly 10 weeks now. I call them my teenagers. They have names officially. Lily is the only one I named, she is the only frizzle and also the biggest of them all . I fear she might be a roo but I am waiting to see. R’s daughter named the other two, the brown one is Jacob (yes it is a hen) and the other white on is Little Birdie. They are constantly moving around in fast motions and constantly doing their weird dominance dance of establishing their pecking order. They love their big roosting stick that is now in the tub with them. Monday night R bought them a dusting bowl for their chicken run (that isn’t built yet) and we got the bright idea to add shavings and put it in the bath tub with them. They LOVED IT! They rolled, squawked, dug and had a blast getting covered in shavings. It was very amusing! Check out my Instagram to see the video (blondeparalegal).
Can’t wait till all the mud dries up and we can see what they do with actual dirt. Too funny!
Because it is still too muddy and cold for outside play (though this weekend it is supposed to be 60 degrees on Saturday), I like to take the silkies on field trips around the house. Last night we got some grit so they could eat treats and we tried meal worms for the first time. They had no clue what to do with them till R kind of broke them into smaller pieces for them. They also got to meet the old lady aka Red dog.
Thankfully she has been around a ton of smaller animals (bunny’s, kittens and rats), so she knows better than to hurt them. She has a lot of patience. They thought she was the coolest roosting stick around. She even tolerated being pooped on by them. Poor poor Red dog.
Raising chicks is an interesting job but also a fun job. I am learning so much. I love introducing treats to the silkies one at a time. The other weekend it was eggs and this last Monday it was meal worms. Fun to see their reactions. With the new babies I added chick starter to their normal starter feed. It has more protein for them. They are too young for treats but in a week or so I will try them on eggs and meal worms like the silkies. My only concern is introducing the two groups together. So I am going to start with a small supervised play date this weekend and add in more time together from there until they are incorporated in. For now though the baby’s are still too small and I don’t want the unruly teenage silkies to cause trouble.
R has started warming up to the baby’s. He likes to sit in the bathroom and chat with them. It is nice to finally see him getting excited about them as well.
As a side note, I can’t believe how expensive people sell backyard coops for. First of all they are all so tiny because they are meant to fit into backyards and most are so simple but people want $500 – $1000 for these coops. The bigger you get the more expensive you get. I saw one for $7,000 and about passed out. I had settled for attempting to build one because I was done looking at the prices and being shocked by them. BUT we finally found a coop as of yesterday. I am so excited. Like us, some lady had searched and searched for a coop when she first got chickens and finally found a homemade one. Well two years later and she got a huge shed type one for her growing flock and put her first one up for sale for a steal of a deal. She was selling it for the best price yet. It is absolutely perfect. I can’t wait till we get it home (which R is working on since it is 7 feet long x 7 feet wide x 6 feet tall). He said on Thursday he will probably have it home to me since he needs a couple guys and a flat bed truck to haul it. But I can’t wait to start setting it up and the run that will be attached to it. Plus I am going to paint it. Such an exciting project. I will have to post pictures once I am done!
So, do you raise chickens? Got any tips?