Boat Babies

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by cakkleberrylane, May 5, 2007.

  1. cakkleberrylane

    cakkleberrylane In the Brooder

    Jan 13, 2007
    About mid morning, a few days ago, while I was eating breakfast on the porch, I heard a tremendous noise. It sounded like a thousand birds all chirping at once. I recognized the sound. Baby chicks. Soon it subsided, but came back periodically during the day. I was curious about where the babies were, the direction of the sound seemed to indicate that they were not moving, which was unusual.
    Putting on my Sherlock hat, I started around the yard and discovered 8 baby chicks and a very startled mother hen in our boat.
    I'm not sure how she thought they would find food or water, the sides of the boat are about 4 feet high. So, I brought a chicken waterer and a container of chick starter and left it in the boat.
    I checked on it a couple of times each day and everything was fine.
    Yesterday, in her great wisdom, she decided to take them on a hike. How she got them out of the boat, I'll never know, they must have flown up onto something on the floor, then onto the seats, then onto the sides and just fluttered down from there. I don't know how she thought she would get them back in the boat, which is high on a trailer, there is no way they could have flown up there again, I'm sure they are only a few days old. She didn't seem to put any thought into where, instead they would all spend the night.
    Eventually, I saw her by the back door with 7 babies. That would mean that there was one that didn't make it out of the boat. I checked and sure enough, a little brown baby was hiding by the drivers seat. I finally managed to catch him and put him under a silkie because by that time she had disappeared.
    Later that evening, I saw her again and slowly walked behind her until I had her in a safe pen.
    I forgot about the baby under the silkie, he and the silkie were very content with the arrangements. Tonight, I got him out to play with him on the bed (on a paper towel) while we watched the Kentucky Derby. I had things to do so Arthur took charge and let him sit on his neck. He had just dirtied the paper towel so Arthur thought he was safe. But no, he did something really smelly on Arthur's neck. I'm so glad Arthur is so cool about it.
    Baby is now back under the silkie and Arthur is in the shower.
  2. That is too cute!! Merry
  3. Keisha

    Keisha Songster

    Apr 27, 2007
    Awww, I bet they are cute. Is it your own hen? or..
  4. cakkleberrylane

    cakkleberrylane In the Brooder

    Jan 13, 2007
    The hen is one of several wild chickens. This time of year, they seem to come from all over to our yard, probably because I put out feed and shallow dishes of water on the ground that is easy for the babies. We have so many, very big predators, that I capture as many as I can and put them into safe pens. After a few days, I give them the run of the yard and they all seem to come back at night to sleep in the pens where I lock them up until morning.
    I think we are getting second generation chicks this year, the hens are the chicks we protected last year and so they realize this is a safe place.
    One of the hens brought 14 babies, one of which was crippled and could only hop. I think she brought the little crippled one on purpose because she knew he had no chance outside. She just stood and watched me pick him up, then turned and walked away, like she was saying, OK, you got him, I can get on with my business! I kept him and 2 others with problems inside for almost a month before letting them outside and they are soooooo friendly. When I go out,this little trio comes running over to get petted and taken inside for a special treat.
  5. mudhen

    mudhen confidently clueless

    Jan 15, 2007
    Shepherdstown, WV
    [​IMG] Oh, what a great story!!
    Last edited: May 6, 2007
  6. jimnjay

    jimnjay Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Bryant Alabama
    That is a wonderful story and it must be very rewarding to see those birds back knowing the trust you to watch over the little ones during the first few weeks. Blessings to you.
  7. samara

    samara In the Brooder

    Apr 8, 2007
    hi cackleberrylane,

    what did you do for the crippled chick? I have one now with club feet, any help would be appreciated. It isn't spraddle leg.


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