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*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Archive for May 20th, 2021

Lucky Thirteen

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┬áThe final tally from the hatch is thirteen chicks. It’s too early for us to discern the percentage of genders among them, but breeds appear to be spread across all the hens we had, which is very rewarding since the eggs selected were random and of unknown origin.

Just one black chick, which we believe to be from the Domestique. The others with coloring align with Barnevelders and the ones with feathery feet are easily pegged for Light Brahmas. There may be some New Hampshire or Wyandotte, too. In the image above, two chicks were messing around away from the group.

Combined with the twelve chicks Cyndie purchased, we are looking at housing twenty-five chickens in the coop in the weeks ahead. I’m going to need to add one more branch for roosting.

After the prolonged exposure to peeping chicks the last two days, I found my sleep disrupted in the middle of the night Tuesday by the frighteningly similar, though uncharacteristically loud, peeping of a frog or frogs outside our open bedroom window. From the edge of consciousness, I was forced to try to figure out why I was hearing the chicks for some strange reason.

Scary echoes of what it was like to be a new parent and have sleep interrupted by any sound that could mean a threat to a newborn.

I take some consolation in the fact these chicks take more naps than our kids ever did.

At the same time, I find myself wrestling with a concern that we are simply raising coyote food. I prefer not framing them as such, but part of me remains acutely aware that we have done nothing to eliminate that ongoing threat.

Could a poultry protection dog that doesn’t have any taste for eating chicken, nor an urge to play “chase” with them, be a possible option for us? It’s hard to say.

I know by now to never rule anything out.

There was a day when I couldn’t envision how we would ever accomplish having chickens to help control flies when we had no experience and no coop in which to house them.

Now we have twenty-five and a coop I built from scratch. What an amazing adventure it is that we are living.



Written by johnwhays

May 20, 2021 at 6:00 am