We have been blessed this year with some new chicks! Although the title may have confused some since I do talk about my gardens frequently and have a LOT of sempervivum, I am talking about baby chickens.
On March 19. hubby decided we needed some more chickens. Our flock was down to five hens.
Although I really wasn’t too excited about the idea, he brought home ten buff orpington bitties (what we call baby chicks down here). This is the breed we settled on about ten years ago as the one we liked the best. He put them into a large box in the living room. From past experience, we know what a mess that can become as litter dust flies everywhere. Ha Since our rabbit cage was still set up, he converted it into a bittie hutch. They settled in pretty quickly and with the whole hutch wrapped in plastic and a heat lamp, they stayed nice and toasty.
They grow quickly. And, once they were introduced to the flock in the coop, everyone has gotten along very well. Oh, there’s a pecking order for sure, but no one has been agressive in any way. Here’s a few pictures of them as they grew….
Towards the end of spring, we noticed one hen was being seriously broody. She would NOT get off one of the nest boxes. We no longer have a rooster, so fertile eggs were not going to happen. But she insisted on staying in that box. Somehow, she even managed to move some of the other hens’ laid eggs from another box into “her” box. Of course, we collect eggs daily, so she contented herself to lay on some wooden eggs we keep in there.
I guess hubby felt bad for her, so he called up a neighbor of ours, who breeds all kinds of fancy chickens. He agreed to give us some eggs he had in his incubator. So, four little eggs came home and were set under Miss Broody. They hatched the next day!!!!
Momma hen is seriously protective of her little ones. She and they are in the same pen that our earlier bitties were kept until they grew large enough to go into the coop. They run around and eat, but the moment Momma makes a certain clucking sound, they all dart in and under her. It is way too cute to see those little heads peeking out from under her breast or wings. Another thing I noticed is they ride piggy-back on her. I had never seen that before..
So, come this fall, I imagine we will have eggs galore! As it is, with just the five hens, we get at least a dozen a week. Good thing we like eggs! Once all of them are laying, we will have to find an outlet for them for sure. As you can see, the bitties grow fast. It does take a good six months before a hen will start laying.
Another blessing, folks! With all of the gifts of Creation from our Father right here in our own back yard, we now get to enjoy watching our chicken family grow.
I pray you have a wonderful day and find many gifts along the way. Our Father is so good to each and every one of us. Let your heart sync with him and that communion will bless you in more ways than you can begin to imagine. His blessings never end as long as we take the time to connect, commune and notice!