23 December 2015

Chicken thoughts and updates

I have some pictures that may actually be in focus, but the thingy that I plug the memory card into to plug into the computer has finally given up the ghost.  Hubby says his dad sent it to him when he did the Korea rotation, and that was back in 2007, so I suppose we got our money's worth out it.  Now to find a replacement ...

The incubator was full-up by Sunday afternoon, so I went ahead and set it on the 20th instead of the 22nd (solstice).  If this batch follows the same timeline as the previous one (even though I lowered the set temp another half degree because they were still hatching a bit too early) ... then I will have the first chicks hatching on my birthday, January 9th!  I tried for birthday chicks last year, but they had to bump my order back to my brother's birthday due to a poor hatch rate.  It happens.  I have fifteen Silkie eggs and 27 gold-laced Wyandotte eggs from Azar and the Pretties.

I now have three Silkie pullets out there setting nests.  The first one has five Silkie eggs under her, set on Sunday also.  The second had three Wyandotte eggs under her from Tiny and the Flashy Girls, but she kicked two of them out - twice.  So she has one Wyandotte egg under her, and will get some Silkie chicks from the incubator when they hatch.  The third, a black pullet I got at the auction a few months ago, just decided to set yesterday, so I am only letting her have golf balls until the eggs in the incubator hatch, at which point she'll have Silkie chicks also.  I'll start Pollux out with eight of the Wyandotte chicks, and see if he can nanny more than that or not.

From the October hatch of GLWs (Tiny x Flashy Girls), I will only grow out one cockerel, nicknamed Bigfoot, and caponize the rest.  I have more pullets than I originally thought, and at least two are in the current cockerel tractor (supervised by Pollux) because they have large feet and shanks and I mistook them for boys a few weeks ago.  I also suspect there are two effeminate cockerels hiding in the pullet tractor - I'll know for certain when I try to caponize them.

We will be eating one of the pied guineas, as the rest of the flock has rejected it.  This is the one I had to separate out last month due to an open sore pecked on its wing and back.  We had all the guineas out to see if the pieds could mingle back into the flock, and this one was chased away by whichever guinea was closest.

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