Our second incubator hatch went better than the first! We ended up with 7 chicks and 2 guinea keets. While still not phenomenal, we are happy with it. We think we know part of what we did wrong with the incubator last time, but in the end it turned out that many of the eggs simply weren’t fertile. We only picked eggs from the hens we thought were some of our rooster Charlie’s “favorites”, but I guess that’s still no guarantee! Here are the new little ones:
It seems kind of apparent to me that some of these chicks did have the same Mama, though some breeds do look alike when they’re young and then they change later, so we’ll see.
Meanwhile, the older chicks, who are now over 6 weeks old, are on their own! One day Mama Bella really seemed to want out of the enclosure, so we decided to let her free range (we weren’t ready to let the young ones out yet). Once she left, she never looked back! She’s been out and about all the time and has left her adopted brood to their own devices!
We just started letting them out a bit; so far they seem to stick pretty close to the coop and I hope that continues!
They stick together, and mostly avoid the older birds but everyone seems to be doing OK at getting along so far. They have no trouble flying up to the highest roosting bars, but their cage is still in the coop as a place where they can feel safe, and they are still sleeping in there. There’s a lot of jostling for the prime spots on the roosting bars at night and we think they are choosing to avoid all that drama for now!
I have one last photo to share on the subject of “interesting things seen around the farm”. This crazy “volunteer” tomato plant popped up between our front steps.
It’s no surprise it’s there, since the hens often got tomatoes to eat on the front step last summer, but we never expected it to get so big. It has outgrown anything down in our garden! We don’t imagine it will provide us with tomatoes though, the girls will certainly get to them first!
Thanks to our friends The LLB Gang for hosting the Nature Friday blog hop. Please visit them and other blogs through the links below!