Thursday, June 17, 2010

Oh Baby!!!!

The babies are here!  The babies are here! 

Are you ready? 

We thought we had one more day to prepare!

Zoner's chicks have started hatching one day early.  They were due tomorrow, but this morning the first one starting breaking out of it's shell.  Now, 12 hours later, 3 have hatched and sadly, 1 has died. 

The first to hatch was yellow with stripes.  #1 is very active and feisty now.  She jumps up to peck Zoner in the face when Zoner ignores her peeps. 

The second one is all yellow, and is larger than the first.  She reminds me of the leghorn rooster (Leggy) we had when he was a chick, she has the exact same look about her head. 

About an hour ago, the third hatched.  #3 is all dark, is very loud, but still is very little and wet from hatching. 

# 4 and 5 were in the process of hatching, #4 halfway out of it's shell and #5 had a hole in it's shell.  I could not see the last 2 eggs.  But there's LOTS of peeps coming from them all! 

The one chick that died was crushed when another hen tried to push her way into the nest box.  Luckily Randy came in and saw the other hen and removed her, then he put some chicken fencing around the nest box to keep other hens out.

Sorry, no pictures today of the babies.  I didn't want to blind the chicks with the flash, or upset Mama Zoner from her duties.  I promise tomorrow there will be pictures!

Today Bella the chicken hen with the 9 guinea keet babies were let outside for the first time.  Outside with the other chickens. 

Bella has been locked in the "nursery", which is a pen made of chicken wire inside the chicken coop.  That way she can see the other chickens and they can see her.  But no one can hurt the babies.  The nursery is big enough that she and the babies can move around, but she's been getting tired of it recently.  The keets are 14 days old now.  We've been letting Bella and the keets out of the nursery for a few hours every day, but kept her confined to the chicken coop and locked all the other chickens out when she was free.

Today Bella happily spent the day outside with her guinea keet babies.  There were a few minor accidents where chickens tried to attack the babies.  One keet got a hurt wing, but it's OK.  It was cleaned up so there's no blood and it was released back to Bella.  Bella got in a few fights, too, protecting her keets.  Tomorrow, Bella and the keets come out of the nursery for good so Zoner and her babies can move in.

Here's a video of Bella and the keets taken this afternoon.


Dog Trot Farm said...

What a sweet photo of Zoner. I would love to be there to see all the new additions to Razzberry Corner! Bella is such a wonderful attentive mother!

AJ-OAKS said...

Alright, the video is so cute! Really enjoyed it. Watched it twice.:)
Congrats on the new babies.
Very much looking forward to seeing pics of the babies.

Chai Chai said...

How wonderful that you have home hatched chicks. Having an adult hen to guard and raise the chicks is a blessing.

Do you have a suggestion for us on when we can let our chicks out in the grass? No adults her, just young keets and chicks.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the video - they're so cute and active. I love how they all run to where mama is interested in something.

Robin said...

WooHoo!! That is so exciting.

Farmgirl_dk: said...

Ohhhhh....congratulations to everybody at Razzberry Corner!
So exciting! Looking forward to the baby pictures. :-)

John Gray said...

well done!!!
lovely to hear of some sucesses

Razzberry Corner said...

Julie - Bella does try to be a good mother, but I think the guineas are wearing her out!

Cindy - Thanks! You were the person who encouraged me to do videos, only I couldn't get the blogspot videos to work, so I had to do youtube.

Chai Chai - Yes, having a mama hen is a blessing! Last year we had 2 groups of chicks, one group with a mama hen & one group without a mama. The ones without a mama are still much more friendly. They all did fine. We let our keets out when they were 2 weeks old. They are in the enclosed chicken pen, so they are safe from other animals.

Anonymous - Every time the mama makes a cluck the babies all run to see what she's got to eat.

Robin - no more chicks for you guys?

Danni - Thanks!!

John Gray - Thanks! All is going well so far.


Farm Girl said...

I love the look on Zoners face as she is waiting for chicks to arrive.
I never can stay away when the chicks hatch and end up not getting a single thing done but standing around watching and listening.

Razzberry Corner said...

Farm Girl - Zoner always was a space cadet, never really paid attention to what was going on around her, hence the name. I hope being a mama hen makes her mature more!

I was very excited when the chicks started hatching yesterday, but I had to work, so I couldnt stand & watch them for hours until the evening when I got home! My husband called me in the morning & told me the chicks were hatching before he went to work. My co-workers told me I should go home, but I couldn't leave work. And that was good, because it took a while for the 5 chicks to hatch!


Knatolee said...

Bella is a proud and lovely mama!