Yeah, we were at the farm store to look at the chicks and we came home with almost 30 of them. They’re awfully cute at this age.
It’s a lot of fun to sit and watch them because they act just like adult chickens, only they’re tiny. They race around scratching at things and preening, and if one of them finds something interesting it immediately launches full defensive tactical maneuvers and races around the pen crazily to make sure no other chick can get its Wonderful Thing.
Notice the red light? That’s their Sun. Right now they live in our laundry room, and the cord to the Sun is threaded through our freezer handle and over to the plug. When I get something out of the freezer, I unplug the Sun for a minute so I can move the cord. And yes, they all freak out.
Kerry humored me and let me get some Silkies, just because I think they’re adorable. They’re basically poodle-chickens, and they grow up to look something like this:
I’ve been wanting some for a long time. The babies are tiny, tiny, tiny. And super sadly, two of them got a little crumpled in their box on the drive home. They were not doing well when I got them out, so I wrapped them in a warm washcloth to see if they would perk up. (Hey, it worked in 101 Dalmatians!)
The black one is fine now, but the little one above didn’t make it through the night. I get so sad about them dying or getting hurt! I think that may be one of the hard things about “farming” for me … animals die. When they’re alive they can be so, so annoying, but as soon as something happens to them, I feel like they were my special lap pets all along.
We’ve actually lost two of the little Silkie babies now. Another one fell in the water dish yesterday. She was out hobbling around when I found her, completely soaked up one side and freezing. Poor little thing was shivering and getting very aggressive about snuggling the other chicks for warmth. So I wrapped her in some tissues and held her near the Sun for awhile. She perked up too, but I think she must have gulped in some water when she fell because by evening she was having a hard time breathing. Kerry tried breaking open an antibiotic capsule and giving her some of that, just to see if it would help, but she didn’t survive the night. I’m really glad Kerry’s willing to go down in the morning and check on them for me, since he takes care of the sad disposal work.
This chick is trouble:
I’m calling her Ginger (after the chicken in Chicken Run) because from the moment we got her home she was trying to figure out how to get out of the pen. Her head is always up staring at whoever walks in (while the other chicks mindlessly scratch and preen) and she walks the perimeter and finds any opening in the chicken wire cover on top and tries to jump or fly up through it. She looks identical to about ten other chicks, but it’s really easy to pick her out because she’s the only one staring at you. Kind of creepy, actually.
So, here we go again with chickens. If the dogs so much as touch them so help me I’ll …