Wanted to tell you guys about my pet chicken, Blackie. From the day I got her at the neighbours farm, hatched out from an egg my neighbour had gotten from a friend of hers, she has always been my favourite chicken. She's a mutt, but I'm pretty sure there's alot of cochin bantam in her and probably some swedish blackhen, since Blackie really IS black - her feathers, her skin, her beak, her comb, her tongue - all black!
The picture above shows Blackie about two weeks old, the day after we got her. She was helping me find useful articles on BYC
Here's my dog Max checking out Blackie in her first brooder. This brooder only lasted about half an hour, wich was how long it took Blackie to fly out of it.
Here she is on my 4-yrolds lap.
Another Blackie baby-shot. I can't believe how tiny she was, lol!
Blackie and one of our buff orps after they moved out in the barn. She was about 4 weeks here.
Blackie on my lap in the coop, she's 1,5 months old here. Whenever I sit down in the coop, wether it's to enjoy the girls and watch "chicken TV" Blackie comes towards me and her entire body language tells me she's dying to get up on my lap - and after some careful consideration she always ends up jumping into my lap and roosting there for hours if I let her. Haha. She's the cutest.
2 months old, enjoying the outdoors
When I was sitting in the chicken pen photographing, Blackie always jumped on to my back - and sometimes even roosted on top of my head! She still does this, except now she does it even when I'm standing up. She's a good flyer!
Blackie loves roosting on my shoulder. If it was up to her I'd be sleeping sitting upright in the coop for her to roost on me. She's 2,5 months old in this one.
And another one of Blackie and me. She's 3 months in this one, fall was setting in.
Scratching around in the horses enclosure. 3,5 months old.
Always the first one to come up to me when I went outside with table scraps for the chickens. Still 3,5 months here.
Blackie, the silkie and a buff orp on a chilly day just before the first snow fell last year. She was now 4 months.
Blackie and me in the coop, 22.11.12 - the snow was now about 1m deep outside so the girls preferred staying in the coop 24h. Blacke was now 5 months
December 2012, Blackie had reached 6 months. The weather was freezing and we didnt have any heat in the coop. It was about -20 to -30 centigrades all the time, and I didn't expect any first eggs until spring really.
Still six months, showing off that green sheen in her feathers. She was the only one of the girls who started roosting this early, the others preferred huddling together in a pile on the floor. My weirdos.
January 10th I nearly fainted when I found THIS on Blackies favourite spot in the coop! It was -25 centigrades outside that day, but Blackie had started laying! Since this we got 3-4 eggs every week from her. None of the other girls were laying yet, and they didn't start until spring as I expected.
Exactly two weeks after laying her first egg, and she was now 6 months old. Enjoying the roost with her silkie best friend.
In february, only one month after laying her first egg, she went broody for the first time. These darn banties, lol. She was sitting on a piece of carrot, and fiercely defending it - thank god it was so cold I was wearing mittens, or she would have bit me quite hard! I had to break her broodiness, wich went fairly easy. I only moved her once or twice and she was done sitting.
On a sunny "warm" day in march the chickens carefully stepped outside the barn. Blackie was first as always. They didn't go further than this, and still preferred to stay indoors as long as there was snow outside.
At the beginning of april both the banties went broody - together. I gave them a clutch of 5 bantams eggs, as that was all I had gathered at the moment, and on april 25/april 26 they hatched out 5 adorable little fluffy nuggets. Turned out to be 4 of Blackies eggs and 1 from the silkie. Three of Blackies chickens were black with buff speckles (she was covered by a buff rooster) and one of them actually was buff with just a few black speckles. She's an amazing mom, taking such good care of the babies, of course with good help from the other broody hen, the silkie. They have always been best buddies so it's adorable seeing them raise chicks together.
This is Blackie yesterday. She's now 11 months old and a proud momma brooding her first clutch of chicks. Still lets me pet her and the babies, and still is my favourite chicken in the coop. This took me quite a while, but I had so much fun going through my photographs - didn't realize how much photos I had of her! Going out to watch Blackie and the peeps now, and getting some more shots for my chicken album Hope you enjoyed!