I'd like to share a tale on my second ever batch of chickens!
After the majority of my first flock of five was given away (3 roosters out of five chickens, horrible luck I have!) we decided to buy some new chicks to fill in the gap, and to give some new playmates to the two pullets of the original flock. So on Thursday, June 11th, Dad drove me up to D&L Denton Farm and Home to pick up three new "children." They had a great selection! I ended buying two Easter Eggers and an (unplanned) purchase of a silver-laced Wyandotte. The EEs were one week old, and the SLW was two weeks.
This batch had a very troubling start; when I brought the three chicks home, the two EEs were extremely lethargic and wouldn't move. With the help of my BYC friends, I diagnosed the Easter Eggers with Coccidiosis. I've never experienced any sickness in my chickens, especially young ones, so I was very worried. The next day I purchased some Corid to administer to the chicks, and the all recovered very quickly afterwards. I feel very lucky that I didn't lose any of them!
After the Coccidiosis incident, I named my chicks! (I was too scared to name them at first, in case any died.)
The yellow one is Cashew, the brown one is Chestnut, and the SLW is Pepe!
Pictures of the Easter Eggers at 1 week old, and the Wyandotte at two weeks:
Cashew is my favorite. She is very friendly and loves to be held. Cashew tends to wander away from the flock often, so she is very independent!
Chestnut is definitely the most outgoing of the chicks, although she tends to be very skittish!
Pepe is more calm than Chestnut, but I don't even bother trying to hold him.
Ever since the first difficult week, raising these beautiful chicks was a rewarding experience! They stayed in the cardboard brooder for the first three or four weeks. I would take them outside once in a while to let them have a taste of the outdoor world. Our neighbor's kids seemed to like them a lot!
Cashew having some fun in the flower beds (my favorite photo ever)
I decided to introduce the chicks to the two older hens at 4 weeks old, and the got along pretty well after a short period of time. It was a little stressful to watch those bigger pullets peck at the chicks, but no harm was done.
At this point, more of their plumage was sprouting, and I got to see what color they might turn out with!
(Awkward feathering stage!)
As many of you know, chickens absolutely adore meal worms. I introduced the treat at about the time they were let outside, and everyone except Cashew seemed to like them. (Cashew prefers her regular feed, I guess!)
Their favorite place to rest is under the Japanese Maple in our yard. They like to take dust baths in the flower pots!
Heres more pictures of the bunch at 5-6 weeks.
At 6 and 7 weeks old, the little chicks are now full integrated with the rest of the hens! I guess we'll see what is yet to come.