21 December 2016

Solstice chick update

So today is the winter solstice.  The good news is, the days won't get any shorter than today - they'll incrementally get longer until the summer solstice.  The bad news is, the cold has not yet hit.  As much as I hate cold weather, I hope we can get a few days of frost to kill off the fleas which have staged a major invasion here in the 75+ weather we've been having.

The first batch of chicks hatched last month are happily growing.  We still give them a lot of food, but it doesn't seem possible to keep food in front of them at all times as the voracious little monsters hoover it up rather quickly.  I got weights this morning (forgot last night, and the previous two Tuesday evenings!) for the four week mark.  Two runts at 5.1 and 5.2 ounces, one in the middle at 5.5 ounces, (those appear to be cockerels) one pullet at 7.3 ounces, one "not-sure-just-yet" at 7.9 ounces, and one pullet weighing in at a hefty 8.0 ounces.  The big girl looks pretty good shape-wise, although her legs are a sooty color.
Pollux watching his latest batch of Wyandotte babies

left to right: a runt, the not-sure-yet and the dark blob is the big girl

on right, that's the big pullet's butt ...
looking closer that is a nice wide tail set!

Wyandotte chicks
I have a second batch of Wyandotte chicks, hatched out Friday.  Fifteen total, but one may be a cull if its neck doesn't straighten out better.  It appeared to be malpositioned in the egg.  This bunch is from only two breeding groups: Azar x the Sisters, and Tiny x the Pretties.  Week zero weights are: one at 1.2 ounce, one at 1.3 ounce, seven at 1.4 ounce, two at 1.5 ounce, and four at 1.6 ounce (all from Tiny x the Pretties).  Looks about the same as the first hatch, but I won't be able to compare again until week four because I missed weeks two and three on the first hatch.  Ah well, I'll get numbers for each week before summer hits this time.
new batch of Wyandotte chicks, hatched 16 Dec
The great possum war rages on, with egg thief number seven trapped and dispatched the previous weekend.  Something tripped the larger trap overnight, but was not caught, so I'll be looking for number eight in the traps soon.

Hubby has been busy the past week:
tree clean-up
That's a water oak behind him, and yes it came down on the workshop.  Given the size of the tree, that's really not much damage to the workshop roof.  The hurricane in early October partially uprooted this water oak (and about three other trees, but further back on the property) and it's basically been hanging for two months as we couldn't figure how to get it down without landing on the pig pen, the workshop, the power line, or the house.  It must have got tired of waiting on us, because it came down last Wednesday evening - and there was hardly any wind that night, so it came down straight.  I did need to call out the power company to get it off the power line to the main box, but we didn't actually lose power, so again not as bad as it could have been.

If I don't post again before the holidays, hope everyone has good ones, and hope y'all are enjoying all the warm weather!

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