This was the most fun I've had in a long time!
My chicks got a treat today for the first time. They are 1 week old and with no health problems thus far (knock on wood), I decided to give them a fresh treat. I don't give them grit yet, so I did what some others on this site have suggested and cut a plug of sod from the backyard for them to get gritty from... (hubby hasn't seen the little yard hole yet ).
I pulled the sections of grass off the top to set to the side, then laid the sod upside down in the brooder. I wedged the little sections of grass in between the branches in their brooder so they could tug at it as if it was growing from the ground. They enjoyed this little adventure thoroughly until... an earthworm squiggled out of the sod plug. They looked at it like aliens just landed. A couple nosed at it but didn't peck. They stayed back from it and eventually ignored it completely.
I grabbed the worm and went upstairs to the kitchen and sliced it up into little bitty pieces (sushi style lol) and put in on a paper towel for color contrast so they could see it. The tiny segments were still wriggling when I placed the paper towel down on the brooder floor and it was total chaos from there out! The chicks went absolutely berserk and snatched the "sushi" up so quickly you'd think I never fed them before. They chased each other around hoping to grab what the others hadn't finished yet, but the best was yet to come!
My tiniest chick Pepper (Australorp) caught sight of another earthworm making its way out of the sod. Since she now knew what it was and how delicious it was she went straight for it and all H broke loose after that. She grabbed the worm and ran to a corner to hide and enjoy her plunder but it was too late. The other chicks saw what she did and came racing over and it turned into a Bruins vs. Capitals playoff game in my little brooder. Little Pepper raced around and around the brooder in circles trying to keep her prize.
Once, she accidentally dropped it behind the big branch as she was running - Immediately, all the chicks ran up to the branch and started screaming! They couldn't reach the worm! It was getting away! I saved the day and tossed it back to them and Pepper (quicker than a tiny thing ought to be) caught it and once again took off on her mad dash! The earthworm eventually got whittled down as the other chicks managed to snatch pieces off it here and there.
My 2-yr-old daughter thought this was amazing and starting screaming and laughing. I was crackin up pretty hard myself. It was the most entertaining thing ever! Next time, I will get the whole thing on video for the kiddos.
I know - long post about a stupid earthworm - but it was soo entertaining!