Monday, September 20, 2010

(**Updated**...scroll down)
Some in schools may call this an experiment,
We just call it "LIFE". :)

We shall see if we have any new, little babies in the next few days. We've candeled them every other night for the past few nights and have seen a lot of movement. The movement has slowed down though, probably due to the lack of space each chick has. We get fertalized eggs from a friend who has a farm about 25 minutes away. He keeps only Rhode Island Red hens and roosters, so that's what these will be, should they make it.

Many think you have to have fancy equiptment to hatch chicken eggs. Not true. Just get some fertilized eggs, put them in some hay inside a box with a bit of water. Cover the top so that they don't get direct light, place a lamp over the top with a thermometer inside. Remember to keep the temperature between 99 and 102 degrees Farenheight. It takes 21 days to hatch a baby chick (most breeds anyway). So much fun and it costed us 1.50 for all 6 eggs. :)

Here's a video on candeling if you're not familiar with the term. It interesting and so fun to do. My kids ask just about every night to check on our babies. Too cute! Just to add this in there, the lady on the video is not me. I found it on You Tube.

Here is a picture I just took of our first little baby (below). After I finished posting this post earlier today, I heard a strange sound. A very faint chirping sound. I got up to see where it was coming from and the sound lead me to our kitchen. I lifted the dishrag that was on top of our little nesting box and low and behold, our first chick was on its way. He/she took about 6 hours to hatch and at the last minute, I gave him/her a little help to fully emerge. :) I feel kind of sad for this little one because you can just tell it wants a mother. It's walking around trying to find a snuggly spot in the box, but there's nothing there to nurture it. Poor thing. I read in an organic farming book once that nature truly is the best way for animals to thrive. Letting a mother hen hatch her babies and then NURTURE them, teaching them to forage for food and hide from predators. Snuggling them when it's cold at night and showing them 'the ropes' of the homestead. I'm not brave enough to introduce this little one to our other hens for fear that they will peck him/her to death.
Anyway, the actual hatch day is tomorrow, so we'll see what happends between now and then. He/she will have some brothers or sisters maybe by tomorrow, so be sure to check back in the next few days for updates.