03 July 2015

Chicken math

There is a joke around BYC about "chicken math," which usually means a person ends up with more chickens than originally planned.  Some folks there understand chicken math involves more than just addition ... it also includes subtraction, multiplication, and division.  I have recently been doing all of those math functions.

First up, the subtraction, not all intentional.  One of the Wheaties died Tuesday.  She had been moping and sulking i the corner since I took away the eggs, nest box, and even the golf balls, so we didn't notice right away when she developed diarrhea again.  By the time we caught it and dosed her, it was too late ad she died about an hour later.  Another subtraction involved two going next door as gifts.  My neighbor Maria had brought us a couple batches of homegrown potatoes, and a couple small loaves of her pan, Mexican sweet bread that is absolutely awesome slathered with butter and with coffee.  In return, I took Whitey over to her (who was originally believed by both of us to be a pullet - oops) then when she came over to look at Feyd's chicks I gave her one of the Delaware cockerels when she remarked how pretty she thought they were.

About those Delawares ... Luanne needed to cull a bunch of her cockerels, and she happened to mention it to me in one of our email exchanges, so I road-tripped over, and brought home over 20 young chicks (3 and 5 week old), two Delaware cockerels (8 and 10 weeks old) and a new Wheaten Ameracauna hen, which Luanne called "Torpedo Girl" because she is pretty sure this is the hen that lays the funky torpedo-shaped eggs that do not hatch.  The ten week old Del is likely to far into puberty already to caponize easily - he is HUGE for his age, and judging from his feet will grow even bigger than the Wyandottes.  The 8 week old Del will get caponized along with the Wyandotte boys that are in with Cappy right now, and the twenty-some-odd young ones are for caponizing practice also.  Luanne needed the space, as not only did she have a great hatch rate, but she has a good percentage of that hatch she wants to grow out, including two very nice and promising-looking Wyandottes I noticed.

Multiplication was covered by the demon-possessed broody Eileen, who is a very protective mother hen.  All four chicks are thriving under her care.

Now, for the division idea.  I divided the batch of GLWs from Cackle into two groups so far, and will take thirteen pullets up to Palatka tomorrow morning to try to sell at the little farm swap in TSC's parking lot.  That leaves me with eleven pullets, and one cockerel to grow out further.  I intend to pare down the pullets to the best three, while I made up my mind this morning to definitely keep the cockerel, Tribble, for breeding.  Along with being a good size and very nicely colored, Tribble is people-friendly and easy-going.  I am banking on that general good-natured attitude being hereditary.  Oh, hubby named Tribble, saying the little chick noises sounded like the tribbles from the original Star Trek series.

I'll fuss and fight with the digicam later for pictures.

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