Tuesday, April 11, 2006


Today at lunch I ran to the feed store to purchase scratch & lay mash for the 3 hens I have left in my flock. They have been laying eggs out the whazoooo, and I don't enough people around to eat them... luscious, big, brown and organic as they are. I usually let the hens out during the day to scratch and peck in the back forty, but with things as soppy as they are out there, it would be cruel (the clay soil sticks to their chicken toes until it looks like they are walking with boulders strapped to their feet).

As I finished my purchase and turned to go, I noticed to my surprise, over against the wall, the large tubs which had been set up with mesh across the top, and reddish warming lights above.


BABIES! You have chickies!!!!

The lady behind the counter smiled, and then chuckled as I ran over to see, in my haste tripping on the sacks of grain at my feet.


As I peered over the top of each tub, I saw below baby chickens of all types, colors and sizes. Some were so itty bitty - only a day old. Others were striped, speckled, or just plain yellow. I stopped to look - totally in another world as I listened to their cute cheeps and peepings. For some reason I had thought that since the bird flu is supposed to be hitting soon, that the local breeders wouldn't be offering their seasonal hatchlings, thus I had not been expecting to see any.

I wanted to hold them - oh so bad. But I knew better. That is how I wound up with the first batch of 10, 3 years ago. After a mere trip to the feed store, I came home with a washtub, 10 peeping chicklets, and a heating bulb.

Problem was, we had no chicken coop! So they stayed in the bedroom in their tub, until we built the chicken house outside. Wow, they grow so fast! Before I knew it they were jumping up to the edge of the tub, teetering with small pin-feathered wings while looking around the bedroom. The grate went on the top to stop that. Not a good idea to have chickens loose in the bedroom!! Anyway, it was a challenge, getting that coop built. I NEVER should have picked up any of those chickies - I just CANNOT say no if it gets to that stage.

14 comments:

Outdoorsy Girl said...

They are just too darn cute aren't they? Every Easter I want to grab a basketful of ducklings and chicks because they are SOOO cute!

Baby bunnies are hard to resist, too. I actually fell prey to a darling baby bunny that I bought one week before Easter several years ago.

Awwww....I miss Sugar (that was my bunny's name) right now! :(

mergrl said...

baby chicks are just the cutest (though I can't see them without thinking about the Friends episode when Chandler and Joey get the chick and the duck, my fave line is when Joey is petting the chick and Chandler says "easy there Lenny" LOL, yeah I know I'm easily amused)

hope you had a good day my friend (hugs)

Crazy Me said...

They are awfully cute but I must admit, it seems like a strange spur of the minute purchase to me. :) Now, give me a puppy and I'm all over it!

Autumn Storm said...

:-D
What a cute piece to go with the cute subject - had to giggle at the thought of you tripping over the sack in your enthusiasm and eagerness to get there rofl

Ranger Tom said...

All I see is future fryers...

;)

tsduff said...

ODG - Usually it is only birds, chicks and goslings which give me the uncontrollable urge to pick them up. My sister Kelly once had a bunny named Bun Bun who SCRATCHED with those long back feet whenever he was picked up. I never could pick one up without that reaction. Awe, Sugar is a cute name :-)

Tee hee Trace - I remember the duck and the chick - didn't they get stuck in that soccer machine? Pretty funny. I never cottoned to ducks - only geese. Have a great Wednesday :-)

Angela - I've had that problem with chicks and goslings since I was a young girl - love the dang things. Puppies are adorable too - but I always have too many dogs and cats already - and their lifespan is MUCH longer than that of a chicken LOL... helps me resist the urge a little more.

Autumn - The lady in the store thought it was funny too... I hate being such a fool around the chicks. It must have looked pretty funny.

Tom - You crack me up. I love to eat them too - but I buy them ready-to-eat at the store. The whole process involved in butchering them at home is gross... been there, done that. I like collecting the eggs better :-D

Anonymous said...

oh man,can only think of all the animals i have buried,part of the rites of having children.mouth to mouth to a rabbit and pygmy goat,under the watchful eye of teary children.oh so glad that stage is in the past tense.but on the other hand great early experience with death for the children-all good things expire at some point,just glad i never had to bury anything larger,beyond cats and dogs.I do have to admit they(the chicks)are cute. :-)

Jeanne said...

I'm off for a few days with uncertain internet access. Have a nice Easter.

Mo'a said...

I wish I were closer so that I could have some of those eggs. My husband is the reason we don't take every animal I fall in love with home....we are down to one cat and one bird....from two dogs, one cat and to many birds to count, they were finches need I say more. I bought a pair to keep my canary company....neither I, nor the seller knew they were the kind of pair the produces many more of their kind.
It is not that Ken does not like animals it just that he knows that things can get out of hand :)

Keshi said...

yellow lil chicks r my favs...awww so fresh and cute...love em!

Keshi.

tsduff said...

Annonymous - animals: you take the good & the bad with them. I think all kids should experience animals in their lives. It adds a greater depth of understanding in their own existence.

tsduff said...

Hey Jeanne - enjoy your Easter holiday, and time away from Ms. Blog... :-)

tsduff said...

Mo'a - you have the most interestin name. Does it have a special meaning? Just wondering.

As for finches - I love them. I have 4 - but although they lay eggs, I don't seem to have any mated pairs - no chicks. I also have two canaries, but same thing - eggs are duds! So no worries.

tsduff said...

Hi Keshi! Happy FRIDAY to you! (I think it must almost be Friday there... yes?) Love those little chickies.