Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Mama no more

Bella the hen no longer is a Mama hen.  She has left her Guinea keet babies. 

The keets are 32 days old now.  

They still run to their adopted Mama, Bella, for food, but she no longer makes that clucking noise telling them food is ready for them.  Bella now eats the food herself, instead of feeding her babies.  The keets now forage and search for bugs by themselves during the days, in addition to eating chicken food by themselves.  

In the evenings they used to like to sleep beside Bella in several nest boxes.  Bella now wants to sleep on the roosts with the other chickens, not in a nest box with her babies.  I guess it is time for the keets to be totally on their own with no mama hen.  


The keets have been totally integrated into the flock since they were not much older than 2 weeks old, so the flock is used to them.  The birds in the flock don't think twice about all these miniature birds among them.

The keets must now fend for themselves in the big world.  

I still go into the coop every evening in the dim and darkness and inventory everyone, to make sure no one is missing.  I also take Bella off the roost and put her in one of the nest boxes with the babies so they can get some "Mama Bella" time.  


CeeCee said...

Isn't it funny how one day, they're just done? It should be so easy with humans. I've been relieved when my one broody hen (always the same girl) goes back to taking care of herself. It's so blasted hot here in the summers and she loses half her body weight.
You putting Bella back in with her babies at night is too cute.

AJ-OAKS said...

I giggle because every evening I also do a head count.
My goodness the babies have grown!
Wishing and sending thoughts that your well starts producing water. I know exactly what you are going through. Our wells are barely pumping water which means I have to have water delivered now. Ugh!

Razzberry Corner said...

CeeCee - Yes, it is odd how the just get over being a mama! And why is it that the same hens always go broody, time after time, but some never go broody?

Razzberry Corner said...

AJ-Oaks - My well is still pumping, luckily! It seemed it was getting low - our water got really sandy/dirty all of a sudden, which terrified me that the well had very little water left. And we've been having over 100 degree temps since forever, with no rain in our memories. And since when we bought the house we were told the well may not pump for much longer, and that we've have to have another well dug soon, so I was concerened. A well is not something that we have budgeted for, sad to say, although we've lived here for exactly 2 years now.

But, on a bright note, the water cleared up after a few days and is still flowing strong! We still drink bottled water, and have minimized the use of our well water as much as possible to be safe, at least until the east coast heat wave and drought is over.

I hope your well starts pumping more water real soon!!


John Gray jgsheffield@hotmail.com said...

dont they all look grown up
and so like dinosaurs!!!

how noisey are they?????

Knatolee said...

Awww, they grow up so fast!

Genny said...

Oh wow, I never thought about having to worry about a well drying up. I hope yours keeps giving you water for a long time. It reminds me of the movie Baby Boom where Diane Keaton finds out her well has run dry. She tells the plumber/roofer/mayor that's good because there's a hose right around the house and they can just fill it up. We do need rain. Everything is browning up here northern VA. How are my nieces and nephchicks doing? I be they're getting big.

Razzberry Corner said...

John Gray - I never thought about how they loook like dinosaurs! lol - it's true!

Knatolee - yes, they do!

Genny - your neices & nephchicks are getting so big now. They've been integrated with the flock for many weeks now. I'll have to do a post on them soon, they are in the "pre-teen" stage. I think there's 3 boys and 2 girls, but that's just my guess.