May 7, 2006 – An Old Story

Here’s the latest version of the story retold many times over – the hatching of baby chicks. About a month ago we sequestered 2 White Rocks, 2 Black Australorps, 2 Barred Rocks, and 2 Auracunas with a Black Australorps rooster and put the eggs in an incubator.

Here’s the incubator about a day before the chicks are ready to hatch.

Before this, they were in egg carton like plastic holders that turned the eggs.

The first pecks out of the shell as the chicks come out. We could hear them peeping in the eggs before they hatched.

Here’s a little one just a few minutes out of the shell – still wet and looking a bit punkish.

Finally, they are moved to the brooding house. In here they are under a red light. I’m not sure we need a red light for these few chicks, but all the advice says to use a red bulb in case one starts to bleed, the others won’t see it. (In larger groups, they will pick at each other as soon as they see a spot of blood and kill each other.) These guys will get a chance to grow a bit before the meat birds come and can all go to the locker together (at least the roosters – the hens will replenish our layers). We are excited to see what kind of birds they look at from the mixes we bred.

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