|The nook so far.|
I keep marveling at how incredibly fast the chicks are growing. They are two weeks and four days old today, and they barely look like chicks anymore. Their combs are starting to pop out above their beaks, and their wings are fully feathered; one is sporting the beginnings of tail feathers already. They're not even three weeks old yet!
Yesterday I had to move them from the big plastic box in which I was brooding them to the bottom half of Rufus's old crate, which is a pretty big dog crate. This will give them more room, but it's pretty obvious to me that at the rate they're growing, they'll need something bigger soon. Well I don't have anything bigger, so the coop needs to be built. And while I was moving them, one got away from me. She flew to the top of the plastic bin and perched on the edge of the bin, and while I was loudly sucking in air because I couldn't believe what I was seeing, she flew down to the floor. I hollered to Steve that one was loose and to come help me. He came and closed the door, and then we corralled her between us until I was able to catch her and deposit her in the holding cell (a big orange Home Depot bucket) until I was ready to move them all to their new quarters. That was a bit of excitement the recurrence of which I could live without for a very long time.
I am remembering a phone conversation with my mother when I got the chicks to let her know that I did. I chose New Hampshire Reds because that's the breed with which she grew up during the time that my grandfather owned the chicken ranch. She seemed concerned that I didn't have the coop built yet. That's okay, I said blithely; I have sixty days which will be mid-July before I need to move them outside. That's what the book said, so that's what I was counting on.
She could have told me that New Hampshire Reds were indeed bred in New Hampshire, but they were selected out of Rhode Island Reds and bred for early maturity! So ha ha! The joke's on me! I need to build a coop!
|Getting to be big girls that roost!|
I mentioned in an earlier post that one of the chickens is much larger than the other three. Although she doesn't appear to be any larger than the others anymore, she is now sporting a black streak on her head that the other three don't have, but Steve and I have both noticed that what's really different about her is that she's a klutz. She wobbles from side to side when she's walking to the point where she looks like she's going to fall over. I mean, she staggers like a drunk. She'll even stumble and stagger when she's standing still. She does tend to wobble when she lies down, and then last night she lay down on her side with one leg tucked under her and the topside leg splayed out, her top side wing stretched out as well, but eventually she righted herself and tucked everything in. Steve mentioned that he thinks she's defective, and I admitted that I thought the same thing. Nothing in the Storey's Guide says anything about this behavior.
Does anyone have an idea of what's wrong with my chick?