I have been under the weather for so long. Flu and Bronchitis , all the while trying to get to work everyday. I was just so worn out. Got where the only thing I wanted to do was work and get home to feed my 11 chickens and go to bed. Some time as early as 5:30. Got into a rut... didnt want to go anywhere...was finding my bed was my haven!! NOT good! Winter blahs turning into Winter Blues!
So the sun was shining today, Chilly but not cold! I called Friends who raise Chickens...all kinds and varieties. Some for show most pets. They had rescued my cages and Chickens at a show one day last Fall when I was called away for a Family emergency. I was so busy driving back and forth to my Parents home(125 miles away) and the hopital that I just couldnt take care of my 100 or so Chickens. So these friends and others fostered in or adopted my birds. I just now got to where I could go and get the cages.
While I was there I toured their little farm and was amazed at all the varities and coops of Fowl. So much fun!! I was introduced to a most gorgeuos solid white French Maran Roo. Both his parents were French Copper Black Marans. He was considered a "Sport". He was bred to 2 Cuckoo Marans and they produced a pair of beautiful Wheaten Hens. He was bred back again to the Wheatens and they are now producing White as well as other Maran colors. Maybe not Show Quality because of non-pure strains but oh what gorgeous birds.
When I started to leave they offered a dozen and a half assorted eggs for hatching. It made me so happy! I now haveFrench Black Copper Maran, White maran, Cuckoo Maran and Buff Brahma eggies. The photo "bleaches" out how truly dark these eggs are.
As I started to leave my friends, they said "Oh no you havent seen the kindergarten yet!" They then took me to their basement which has ben converted into a baby room for Seramas and Silkies. Oh man I was in Heaven for sure. I got to see colors and varieties I had only heard about. As I was about to go my Friend said here I know you love Silkies, and she handed me the sweetest little guy, a blue Silkie. Her Husband said "Oh No No, She cant have only one... it will be lonely!", so she handed me another. Oh Happy Day!!!!!
oh yea!!!! Eufaula. So glad to hear you had a Happy Day to give those Blues a kick in the but. I hate winter when we get those dark gloomy over cast days. Puts me in the dumps too.
Your new babies are beautiful. Hope your hatch goes well. Babies will perk you up and keep you busy
Yep I am perked for a few days! Actually having new babies to tend makes my days happier! Donna Ive got to get my incu going for a few days to calibrate it again but hopefully these little eggberts will be in action real soon!
Hey there Nanny_56 glad to hear from someone new!! Yes you really have to give chickies a try, once you do...Wellll you cant go back to not having them! OH how funny... I live in Putnam County , Georgia!!!
Eufaula I am so happy for you!Those silkies are so sweet,I have a few blues born this time to.And your right nothing can perk you up like babies and eggs to hatch.My winters are long and cold here and this year because I could break those two silkie broodies I let them hatch and did some in the incubator also and its something to look forward to and to do to take your mind off the darkness and cold.I also have some orpi. eggs in the incubator and looking forward to more babies.Again so happy for you.Keep us updated on your hatch.
Careful what you wish for, nanny_56. Baby chicks are SO cute, that they tend to become addictive. And then they become chickens, and then there are eggs, and then more chicks, and so on and on...I know.
Your name sounds as if you're ready for the goats now...:)
The Pygmies are very small, and might fit nicely into a closet barn.
Hey Y'all! I set up my incu last night. I need a new thermometer!! Please ...anyone have a sugestion for a source???? I have a Walmart, TS,and one feed store in my area . I dont have time to order over the net.
My incu is just a Little Giant, but it has a turner , fan and light. No Hygrometer. I wouldnt know how to read it anyway. I used it last year without the fan , had pretty good luck , but never enough eggs to really put it to a test. A friend modified it with the fan, said it works great for her, so Im raring to use it and see. Eggers are waiting in a semi-warm draft free place , but neeeeed to get into the incu ...yesterday!! LoL!
Thanks Guys! Walmart didnt have what I needed, or at least I couldnt find it, no one working there seemed to know where to look????? Got a regular indoor out door thermometer from ACE. Eggers in the Incu... all set. 23 (not to count my chicks before they hatch mind You) in all. So by February 7th we should get at least a couple!
Heres an update on my babies. Not so sure now that they are blue after all. Once I got them into a better light , I think they are just going to be blacks...Haaaahaa...who cares!!! I have babies again and they're Silkies!
Hey Eufaula - I put in eggs today too! I put in some Easter eggers (4 now but might sneak another one in tomorrow if one of my 2 lays another) ... they'll be mutts though. They will be either a wyadotte or faverolle mix - should make for an interesting color mix. I hope to have something hatch. This is my first try with my new Christmas gift. I got the basic incubator so I will have to monitor the humidity, temp, and also turn the eggs.
Its been a week and the incu had it first mishap yesterday! I woke up to 75 degree rainy weather ... NOT good! Just two days before it was in the 30s . Yeppers! Tornadoes started popping up all over Georgia! I was very lucky, they just went over me . Bad wind and rain and limbs blown everywhere. Then the electricity went out for almost two hours.
I grabbed my down insulated jacket and covered the Incu. Thank heavens it wasnt any colder than it was, or I just dont think my eggies would have made it at all. My biggest worry is that the pressure drop was so drastic. I hope this wont be another disaster like last year. I honestly believe that embryos cant survive it. Oh well we will see. Im hoping for the best.
Eufaula; Barb and I just went back to this thread to check what has been going on, yep we are getting eggsited. I have wanted to have an incubator for some time now but it has always managed to get put on back burner, you know "wait"! Think I will have to move that to the get it done file, huh.
Green that is indeed one handsome roo.
I was just thinking plain ol chickens but now I'm not sure. I might go fancy. I don't need a prolific egg layer as there are just the two of us. Of course I'm sure our girls would want us to share as well but that would be an enticement for them to visit, Right?
Hope the little guys in the bater made it through.
He does look like mine.Very handsome.I don`t like it when there whole face is covered with feathers,I like the original look not the show quailty stuff.If you look at what silkies were suppose to look like and what they look like now there is quite a difference especially the head.They are more puffy looking like a cotton ball,but to each his own,we all like different things.
Well ...its looks as if he's going to be the only one for tonight! Yep,..I said HE... you should see the comb on his head!!! Hes so funny , he hasnt quit Peeping since he hatched!!!! Oh well back into the incu he goes for now!!!
So far only one more, a buffOrpington/BCMaran cross and one Buff Brahma Eggie Pipping. I think my Thermostat is a wee bit off so maybe today is the day!!!! Lordy I hated coming to work today!!!! I could sit and stare at that Incu 24-7!
Drum roll Please!! Todays little fellas are TAHDAH!!!
1 Buff O / FBCMaran Cross
3 Buff Brahmas , all fluffy and dry and alert!
5 still fluffin' and dryin'
2 FBCMarans still thinking about coming out of their cozy eggies
4 on the half shell still drying out!
Out of 12 pure strain Maran eggs only one was fertile, and that little booger was the first and strongest to hatch. The rest were lazy and took their time about getting born! Im still waiting to see how many of these still drying in will make it. They all seemed to have a bit of a problem breaking through the inner membrane and were stuck. so I helped by finishing the air sac end of the shell for them, thus the mess you saw in the incu. Only one little baby still had yolk attached and perished, although it was put into the incu at the same time as the rest. All I can figure is that since it was directly in the middle of the incu between the heating coils it just didnt get quite as much heat as the rest.
these photos are of the first hatched . They were ready to go out into the brooder house . Their new home actually sits next to a window so they can peak outside whenver they want.
Heres the brood , Out of 23 eggs due to hatch on the 7th I only got these 10. But considering the fact that upon inspection I found that only 1 of 8 Maran ( not 12) eggs was fertile, I guess that was a pretty good hatch. they all look so much alike right now it was hard trying to decide who was who. But as you can see in this photo There is only one that is a pure Maran he has no reddish glints to him at all. He's easy to pick out! If you could hear him it would be even easier! He is so loud. And of course the lightest one,Buff Brahma, is very easy and it seems to always be getting into mischief or stepping onto the others just to make them "Yelp" . Its at the bottom left of the photo as if standing at the Bar waiting to be served!!
heres a close up. Im pretty sure the lighter ones are Buff Brahmas, the dark ones with reddish faces are the Crosses. Oh you can see two of the chicks still need me to clean away the dried "Goo" from their little heads.
Before I close for tonight I thought I might show you the parents of the BuffOrp/Maran Crosses! Heres is Papa HitchCock ( French Black Copper Maran) Flopsie and Floozie ( Buff Orpingtons) and in the background hopefully soon Mama Mary (FBCMaran).
The crosses were deliberate. Im trying to produce a Hen that will have darker eggs and be more productive. The Orps lay every day usually and have nice medium brown eggs, while the Maran is very stingy laying but her eggs are Gorgeous Dark Hot Chocolate brown.
I'm sure I'm missing something here but don't it cost more to order eggs than live chicks???
Or is it the fun of incubating them.
Just curious...If not then maybe I better get some eggs and get started that way.
Yes, WAY more expensive to order the eggs, quite a bit more. But watching the hatch is worth it. It's truly a miracle. I have 3 boys ages 3, 5, 7---so it's fun for them, too. Also, you have to order a minimum of 20 or 25 live chicks I think. And I don't need that many. But you can order eggs in increments of 10, and only around 25-40% of them hatch, so it's more manageable for me. I can also buy chicks at my local feed store---that was my plan---to buy 3 chicks next week. But Eufaula's pics made me want to do the hatch again. Mine will hatch the day my sister and nieces come into town for a visit, so that will be fun for them. I ordered 30 eggs. Way too many. I haven't confessed to my husband yet. He is not going to be all that thrilled with that large quantity. We might end up with 10 or more new chickens. Which we don't need.
(* *) That is kind of what I guessed.
I've thought about making a incubator and getting a doz. eggs from a local source of free run chickens. They charge a quite a bit for eggs to eat but to hatch out would very reasonable. However they are not bantams or anything fancy but they do have a rooster running with them. He is asking $5.00 a doz. I've just been going to Sam's and getting 36 for $3.00 and don't eat any sunny side up. I know they are from caged chickens and all that.
4 of us got together and decided to get some broilers to fatten up for our freezers. Daughters Idea but I like it. We ordered from Welps, they were not as high as Murray. I am still going to get some layers, maybe in March when the local sources start handling them. I may work into incubating some later as I'm sure our great grandkids would get a kick out of it.
But have fun and be well! Make hubby a special supper before you break the news. lol
Yep, if it werent for the fact that I have so many local friends with every imaginable breed, I guess I would be ordering chicks too! I get my eggs free or in trade. Whenver I have a broody Hen I dont have to worry about the incu at all!
Hey Catsy!!! Ummmm got any Dark Brahma eggies you would want to talk about ?? LOL!!! Poor Old Wambli needs a Dark Brahma Family! Right now he still thinks hes a little bitty Silkie!! The photo is him at only a week old. You can see why I named him the name which means "Little Eagle".
Cajun, t-RX (I like that) is on the money. The Roos are the Rock stars, with the spiky hairdos, the hens more sedate with nicely rounded Bonnets. The only ones I'm not really sure about are my Silver laced. That coloring often results in "hen-feathered" breeds, and I'm unsure whether it is like that for these. They were Straight run from a hatchery, and there seem to be 4 hens. We _know_ that doesn't happen*G*. I usually get 4 out of 5 roos...
I can't see the picture before posting, so I'll try to identify next post
Eufala, Wambli is beautiful. My girls would swoon...
We call the hens the eagle chickens, too.
Unfortunately, while I could probably send you eggs from the Dark Brahma hens, they would not have a Dark Brahma Poppa. They would have a Cochin daddy, or, a totally random one. The Cochin is a lemon blue, and the biggest rooster I've ever seen, but I have no idea what the chicks look like.
Oh thats right , I forgot (brainfreeze again) , Hmmmm...Although a HUGE Brahma /Cochin Hen would probably Make Wambli VERY Happy!!!
Well the new chicks are doing really well. They had a rude night though! The cold front moved through yesterday and brought lower 20 temps here , after having such beautiful upper 60 and 70's. Even with two lights in the Chick Brooder their normal 70 degree temp dropped down to a very Chilly 40 degrees. every one was under the boxed in light this morning .
Morning Porkpal, The Box has a 40 watt light bulb in it. It was made by the same person that made my Brooder pen ,1st photo. For the new chicks I take the box out and place it into the large aquarium with screen top , 2nd photo. 3rd is the box light. It works really well.
Eufaula you have it goin on. So glad to have you back with baby chicks.
Catmad, amazing that you received such beautiful birds from a hatchery.
An arctic blast brought us three inches of snow today, and a cold wind. My new white roo was in the horse lot shed. His situation wasn't the greatest, so I brought him home. Think the others are fine. First thing he did was jump up in my recliner to sit with me. What a sweety. Of course, in the morning he'll be crowing and crowing, and won't be such a sweety then. Think I'll put him in the back room in the closet when I go to bed. :) For tonight though, he can sit with me.
Was reading an article from fb that said, only 14% of our population lives in rural areas now. In 1930 it was 75%, or so this site said. I knew 100 years ago 80% of us lived on farms. Things are certainly changing. Seems to me, if things get rough food wise, people on farms are better off than those in cities. Hopefully, nothing tragic will happen. I for one, do not know how to grow or produce enough food to sustain myself.
My little grandson and I planted some tomato seeds in some pots and put them under a grow light last week. The first one sprouted today. Too bad he isn't here to see it. Can I actually grow a tomato plant? Guess we'll see.