One thing I didn’t touch on last week was our adventures in raising chicks. We already have five chickens – Brown Shavers, each a couple of years old – but had the opportunity to hatch some Rhode Island Reds to potentially add to our flock.
We borrowed an incubator, and out of six eggs, four hatched (not a bad strike rate). From those four, we had to put one to sleep after (we think) it slipped tendons in its legs and we couldn’t rehabilitate it.
That leaves us with three chicks, who are becoming bigger by the day. We have a plan for any roosters we end up with, but hopefully one or two new birds will be able to join our other girls.
I’m a little nervous about how they’ll fit in. Chickens aren’t nice people – they tend to dislike chickens of other colours, and will mercilessly bully those who are different, weaker or smaller than themselves. Chicken behaviour gave us both the terms ‘hen-pecked’ and ‘pecking order’ for a reason.
But right now, the new birds are cute, fluffy and seem full of the joys of new life. We’re enjoying that, and will just see where it takes us.