Monday, February 25, 2008

Baby chicks update!

We've had a full week, and I have plenty else to post about, but I thought I'd better give an update on the chicks first.

They are all doing wonderfully, growing every day and getting new wing feathers. They seem to like each other quite well. If we weren't planning to get a few more, I might decide to name them "Meg," "Jo, "Beth," and "Amy." But the boys are pretty set on Vampire for the littlest Black Aussie.

They are starting to recognize our voices, and came peeking out to greet us this morning. The little Australorps still run when I stick my hand in to pick them up, but the bigger Buff seems to know what's coming -- an adventure!

A top shot of the brooder, which we made out of a Rubbermaid storage bin, duct tape, and 1/4-inch wire mesh. They have plenty of room to run around and spread out when they feel like it, but they prefer to hang out together most of the time.

The daily routine is pretty simple. We go in to say "good morning" and change their paper. I'm using newspaper with a layer of paper towels on top, and I change the worst pieces twice a day. They poop a LOT!! (And I dump it all, paper included, in the compost bin!) I hate to use so many paper towels, but it's temporary. I'll pick up some wood shavings this week to give them more to play in, and the poop will fall underneath so they won't be sitting in it when they nap and I can change the newspaper less often. I have a spare Rubbermaid container next to the big one that I move the chicks to while I clean.

I have a one-gallon waterer, and so far I've just dumped out the brim once a day and let the waterer refill itself. I changed the water completely the fourth day just to keep it fresh. They don't drink much yet.

In the evening, we go in to say goodnight, and I put a flannel receiving blanket over the window in the top of the brooder to keep the warm air in. They're in a room that doesn't get heated, so it cools off a bit at night.

In a few weeks I'll start taking them outside on nice days so they get some fresh air. They still need the temperature to be around 85-90 degrees. UberDad should have the coop finished by Easter.

That's it for now!

1 comment:

Becoming Me said...

Very cute. How great that you'll have chicks for Easter. In your latest post, I saw a picture of your kids making butter. Would you be willing to share the recipe? I'd love to give it a whirl! Thanks. Angela

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