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Discussion in 'Pictures & Stories of My Chickens' started by americaunamomma, Mar 7, 2015.

  1. americaunamomma

    americaunamomma New Egg

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    Mar 7, 2015
    Hello ALL! My husband and i bought a home with property back in august and wasted no time jumping right in to the hobby farm life. We started with 2 hens and a rooster, and have grown tremendously from there (in our eyes!) From there we got 12 chicks (americauna, buff orphington, and rhode island reds) of those 12, we only have 7 remaining due to hawks and a puppy. We have also added another rooster, 2 more hens, and just recently another 30 chicks. (it's also fun to mention we have 4 goats and 2 bunnies, and momma bunny just had 3 babies :)) )

    We've been buying our chicks from the local feed store and enjoying watching them grow into mature hens. One week we noticed one of our older girls wasn't leaving the nesting box. Upon research we found out this meant she was "broody" we weren't exactly looking to have her lay on eggs, but after a week of her NOT LAYING AN EGG, and not acting like she was ready to give it up, we decided to put some eggs under her. She took very well to them, and has been a very dedicated broody. We weren't sure of exact dates on any of them, but due to the length of time she's been broody, and pure curiosity, i took to BYC message boards to see what i should be looking for in these eggs.

    From the message boards I learned how to "candle". Sure I was doing it WAYY too frequently, but since we only had 5 eggs under her and we weren't dedicated to this first group, i figured i could use it as a learning experience. I wanted to see the air cell, and how it grew, I wanted to look for veins and a beak entering the air cell to breath. I was so excited to see the changes in the eggs, and to eventually hear a chick moving inside the egg! I then did A LOT more research to see what to look for in progressing toward hatch day. I found myself on a thread for duck eggs, but figured it was similar enough. I saw pictures of candled eggs showing the air cell, then of a pip, and then eventually a baby duckling :)

    My excitement kept growing! I've been limiting myself to checking the eggs under our broody once or twice a day. (which i know is probably too much, but again.. i am using this as a learning experience) After i got off of work today, i went out to check on the animals and to look for a pip. To my surprise I found one egg completely broken. But I didn't see the baby chick! I lifted our broody up some more to check the other eggs, and eventually the baby chick came out from underneath the broody's wing! We are over the moon excited about our home grown baby chick! (and not paying the feed store $4 for this baby chick!!!!)

    So now for my question(s)!!

    Since it doesn't have the hangy thing around it's beak like a rooster would, I'm assuming I've got a beautiful pullet here right??

    And will adding a dish of chick starter and some water to the nesting box suffice until all the eggs have hatched?

    And at that time should we move them to a lower nesting box (or do so now) so the babies don't fall out?

    Thank you all so much! This is so exciting for us!
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  2. Americano Blue

    Americano Blue Mush on!

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    Hello Spring
    My Coop
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  3. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    Welcome! When do you get your goats?
     
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  4. americaunamomma

    americaunamomma New Egg

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    Mar 7, 2015
    We got our Billy Goat in January, and he spent no time getting with the girls. We expect babies by the end of April hopefully.
     
  5. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    You most likely won't be able to sex your chicks until they are at least a month old. Don't put any open dishes of water near chicks. It's too easy for them to drown, or even fall in and get chilled. That chick should be ok for a day or two until the rest hatch. I'd not bother Mama until the rest of the clutch hatches. Unfortunately, you risk injury to the remaining egglets if you mess with them right now. In the future, if you can get Mama broody into a floor level nest where she won't be bothered by the rest of the flock, that would be best. But chicks are amazingly resilient, and do ok getting down from quite high. But, they won't be able to get back up. So when she brings them down, you'll need to provide opportunity for her to have a safe nest at floor level at that time. You could put a nice cushion of hay on the floor under the nest box so the chicks will have a soft landing when they come down. I wish you the best. Sounds like you are having fun.
     
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