I only got up three times last night to check on my new chicks. All baby chicks survived the night, but they were very quiet and drowsy through this morning and into early afternoon and I was worried. One had pasty butt, but nothing too extreme that a little wet paper towel couldn't manage.
Now, when I first began envisioning my flock some eight months ago, I pictured having all my chickies arriving at one time, kind of like at a birthday party. This has not been the case. Wednesday (yesterday), I purchased my first six chicks, three separate breeds, at one store and needed to wait until the next day (today) to purchase another six, three other separate breeds, at another store. Mother Nature again, however, chose to play by her own rules and the Araucanas I expected today were not in the shipment. They aren't expected now until next week some time.
That's ok, we came home with four beautiful new chicks, bringing our total flock number up to ten. Maybe I'll still get two Araucana (not Americauna, like I had originally thought) next week when they finally decide to be born.
Here are the four new babes who joined our family today:
Two Rhode Island Reds (modeling hands courtesy of Alana, my oldest son's girlfriend):
and two Barred Rocks (modeling hands courtesy of my son, Teagan):
After a bit of jostling, everyone seemed to settle in fine together.
Eating, like good girls:
Doing chick investigation:
And everyone seemed to be getting along fine.
Until late this afternoon.
Nobody warned me that Barred Rock chicks are the chicks from HELL.
For some reason, these two brand-spanking new Barred Rock chicks have decided to zero in on my two, older Black Star chicks and have been - literally - pecking the crap out of them. For example, I watched in horror tonight as the bigger Barred Rock gal saw one of the Black Stars and ran (yes, chicks run), the length of the box for the sole purpose of biting the Black Star right under her little eye. The little Black Star is screeching in pain and running around the box trying to free herself, to no avail, from this piranha hen. It was awful. And it kept happening, again and again and again. Why specifically these two chicks are the target is completely beyond me.
I finally wound up dividing the chick box into two parts with cardboard this evening, sending the two Barred Rock Beasts into time-out exile. Bad chicks!!
Here is another picture of the Devil Chicks, just in case you should ever run into them on the street. I'll let you guess who the Supreme Evil One is: