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Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by justuschickens59, Aug 13, 2010.
What an awesome sight!!! A big box of beautiful babies!
These little ones are quite cute and very friendly. My two that are hanging out with them act like total spazzes.
They weren't shipped, we picked them up from the breeder. He gave me the eggs for free, but he did tell me that he was having fertility problems, so that's it I guess. He is a really nice guy; I'll talk to him next week probably & let him know how things went.
My sister-in-law is buying some random chicks this week and she's going to pick up a couple extras for me in case my egg hatches. Time to unpack my chick supplies....
Well, my lone egg hatched. He is the black chick in the pics. He's bit of an ugly duckling, lol, but he is a survivor! He's only a couple of days old so maybe his appearance will improve as he grows. The yellow ones are buff Orpingtons that my SIL got. They are feisty & loud, lol.
How's everyone's birds doing? My Lavenders are getting bigger. My big pullet's comb is getting a little pink to it which is exciting. I'm getting eggs again which is nice. The geese moved back in to the Orpington pen and are getting along fabulously with the chickens now that they aren't breeding. They absolutely do not like the little ones though. They stand there and worry them through the cage periodically. Unfortunately I lost every one of the older started birds to rat snakes. They were killing them at night on the roosts, suffocating them, trying to swallow, being unable to, and going for another one. I pulled all of the bedding out of the house as I discovered the snakes were just living under the pine shavings. I now drag the nest boxes out every day to check them and put them back.
My GLO is continuing to grow..... but the poor gal is still in with my bantams. The adopted mama - an OEG - all of a sudden developed cataracts around her 1st birthday (technically hatch-day). Her pupils gradually turned foggy over a month & then halted. I thought we might lose her, because she lost a little weight. The OEG adapted without any intervention from us. Basically, the GLO chick became her seeing eye pullet. I'd love for the GLO to start integrating with the orps, but the two are inseparable right now.
I also got a few more surprises. White orps. My guess is there's a white/diluting gene in the mix. It causes the gold (like in the above chick has) to be diluted to white. Perhaps 2 copies may cause complete white. (I have a double recessive white gene in my blue line that occasionally pops up. These chicks remind me of them.) I know the father is my SLO roo and the mom is likely Blizzard's daughter. (so full sister of the GLO)
Front: Blue Orp & the "white" orp from my laced pen
Back: Blue SLO
I'm so sorry you lost your started orps. That really hurts!
Bad snakes! I hope you can find a way to keep them out. I'm sure they'd eat your chicks if given opportunity.
Wow, sorry about losing your birds to snakes. It must be hard to snake-proof a chicken coop since they are so skinny. My chicks are still inside but we have seen foxes and pine martens prowling around the back yard, so we will have to make sure we have a really secure coop.
My 3 chicks are getting bigger, one of the buffs is feathering in much faster than the other. And my fancy black chick is feathering in REALLY slow. What do they say again, that the pullets feather in faster than the cockerels? I forget. I am just hoping I don't have 3 boys. I will have to take some pics of them today to post.
Thankfully the Lavenders and two remaining laced chicks are in a cage made from hardware cloth. I've done everything I can to make it so that snakes cannot get into the cage and have yet to see one there. I just don't know what I'm going to do as they get older. I hate keeping chickens on wire for that long.
I sold my first dozen hatching eggs this weekend also. So fingers crossed they have good fertility. The eggs were picked up and not shipped so that should help. But my fertility in the current set of eggs I incubated is abysmal. I think there are four eggs left that look like they might hatch out of like 18. There were a lot of clear eggs and early deaths. But I think that's just from the terrible styrofoam incubator. I hate using them. I have a litle Brinsea now that the friend with the Rcom loaned me to try out as she's not using it at all right now.
And as for feathering, in general my pullets feather in faster than my cockerels. Although I haven't noticed that as much with these Lavenders. But it is certainly true with my Silver-laced.
The feathering of my orps really depends on the line.
My blacks & lavs all feather in pretty fast. For sexing them it's all about the comb & wattles. I've had pink combed males as early as 2.5, but normally by 3.5 weeks. Another trick was to compare face shapes. Females tend to have an angular face while males have a more rounded, chubby head.
My blues, chocs, & choc cuckoos all had small combs, and both sexes had pinkish wattles. SOMETIMES the males would feather in slower and have a porcupine look around 4 wks. The key for them was the boys would begin to get pink combs between 4-6 weeks, while the girls would stay flesh colored. Another trick was to pick them up. The male bodies were pretty solid (more muscle) while the females were light & boney. The boys' comb size was subtle, but they were slightly larger. Before age 3 months, I could only tell comb differences when comparing same aged birds. I sold most of these orps and only kept one of my fav females. Her offspring always give me frustration when attempting to sex them.
My laced orp females tend to feather in faster than the males. I have one very nice looking 4 wk old SLO. At hatch I guessed male due to size & head shape. The "sister" was just sold this weekend. She was fully feathered & had a girlish face. They're 4 wks old. The predicted male has a lot of chick fuzz left, but no comb/wattle development, nor pink color in the face. It's either going to be a large, stunning, female..... or a handsome future dinner. I'll try to take a pic & share later.
Here are some pictures of the kids and the unrelated pullet that is filling out nicely ignore I do say so myself. ANd of course Golly being curious about what I’m doing.