Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Our Cousins Come to Visit

This took place recently, not a few months ago.
On winter break we had our cousins come from New York and New Jersey. They younger ones, Tal and Aaron loved the chicks. Every morning they would come with me to let the chicks out, all bundled up because of the cold. They filled their feeder, threw them scratch and sometimes even let them eat from their hands. They checked for eggs at least 5 times a day and were excited at every finding. They became experts on the chickens laying patterns and commented on everything.

Moving the Chickens to Friends'

Shachar,A friend of mine from school was over and I asked her if her family would like to take care of our chickens for about two weeks during the noisiest part of our renovation. She talked to her family and together we decided to move the chickens to their house. One Sunday my dad, my sisters, me, and my friends family went over to their house and all day long we worked on building a chicken coop. We dug a trench, weaved chicken wire together,and put up boards. Then in the afternoon when we were finally done with the coop we had to move the chickens over. We put the chicks in their house and then went on to get the older chickens in. They were much more reluctant to go in since it was the middle of the day, so we had to chase them into their house. Then along with all the kids in the neighborhood we lifted the two houses into a trailer attached to our car. We locked the coops down and drove to our destination. We tried to drive slowly and smoothly, but at every quick start-up or sharp turn we still heard flapping followed by squawking. Once we got there we unloaded the houses from the back onto a wheelbarrow. My friends' neighbor, parents and my dad all helped push, pull, carry the coops on the wagon down the big hill and to the aviary. We released the chicks first and then the big ones, and then watched them explore their new home. The ground we had chosen for their coop to be on had been full of weeds but after the aviary had been completed either they were covered in dirt, pulled up or completely stomped flat, still, the chickens pecked it . For the next couple of weeks I went over to Shachar's two or three times a week to visit the chickens. I missed them a lot. The one good thing was that I (almost) always had plenty of time in the mornings before school because I no longer let them out (though even when we still had the chicks I never had to take care of them, I simply chose to, my parents could have, and sometimes did). And there were also no dark and scary nights when I had to lock them up. But besides those two little reasons it was terrible not having them. For one, now we had to buy eggs again!!!! Slowly I started visiting the chicks less often and I did not get to watch them grow up.

Friday, September 3, 2010


Soon we combined both groups of chickens, because the chicks' current area was too small. The hens were not too nice to them at first but they adjusted, though they still hung out in separate groups. We tried to let them out as much as possible so that they could have more space. It was very chaotic and though I loved the chicks I knew I liked it better when we had just had five chickens. When we only had five it was peaceful and I could always say hello to each chicken individually. Now all the chickens had to push to get to me and were impatient when I came. But all in all I think the chicks (includes chickens) were happy, and so was I, it was nice having ten chickens. Then we started construction on our house. We decided it would be best if we moved the chickens somewhere else.

This happened many months ago, so it may lack detail.
I will write a new post continuing this one soon.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Chicks Move Outside

I almost forgot about the blog which is why I didn't write for a long time. I had written this by hand a couple months ago, but forgot to post it.

Since we knew we would bring the chicks outside soon we built them a little house of wood with a window in the front. They lived in for about a week. Then because the chicks were almost six weeks old we decided to bring them outside permanently. They had grown a lot of feathers though fluffy (our Barred Rock) was still very fluffy and had fewer feathers than the others. We also built a three foot by four foot portable fence, so that we could enter the chicks four foot by five foot area and then close it so no chickens could get in or chicks could escape. Because the area we closed off for the chicks was in the aviary the chickens were annoyed at losing that space. Their food was where the chicks were now so we moved the too. By the time the chicks reached two months, they wanted more space. So whenever we let the chickens into the yard we would let the chicks into the aviary and close the door. Soon we stopped closing the door when the chickens were out, so that they would mix with the chicks more. Whenever they were inside the aviary, we put scratch next to the fence dividing the chicks from the chickens so they would notice each other more.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Revena Meets Chicks

All five of the chickens were at the compost and the chicks were in the A-frame. Serene seemed to have gotten bored of the compost and wandered towards the chicks. We had put the chicks straight into the yard, and they were adorable in to them the forest of Blue Bells, but they had gone into the A-frame, probably feeling safer in an enclosed area. Anyway, I did not want Serene going in because I did not know how she would interact with the chicks. If she wanted to she could trap them in a corner and peck at them. I would have let her come close if the chicks were in the yard because then they could have run away if they wanted to, but since they were inside I shooed Serene away. A couple minutes later Revena came over. I figured she is a gentle chicken and she never pecks hard so I decided to let her in. Revena explored the place and did not really notice the chicks. Soon she noticed them but just continued to walk around. She got to the food and began to eat, I moved her away from the food but she just came back and continued to eat.As my last choice I gently pushed her out of the A-frame, closed it up and went inside because I had to help my mom. Suddenly, all five chickens became very interested in the chicks and they all gathered around their coop. I wished I could have stayed out and let them in one at a time, but I had to go in. At least Revena had met the chicks!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Blue Bells

The buds are coming up and we don't want the chickens to eat them. We couldn't just not let them out, so I did my best to block of the heavily budded areas with sleds, chairs and blueberry netting. It kind of worked, but the chickens still got to them. In the end we decided to just stay out with them, and make sure they did not eat the buds. As the buds blossomed into flowers and bluebells covered the grass, we noticed that the chickens were not eating the flowers now that they were big. We stopped watching them all the time and they had the yard back.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Outside for an Afternoon

One warm sunny day when the chicks were about 4 and a half weeks old, we brought the chicks outside. We had brought them outside before, but this time we put their house next to the aviary so the chickens could see the chicks. We left them out for the whole afternoon, and hopefully they really noticed each other. Another day we brought them outside and put them in our A-frame coop and let the chickens out into the yard, so they could be close but no bother each other.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Chicks growing up

When the chicks were 3 and a half weeks old we went away for Passover. We were away for a week and when we got back I thought they were huge. My dad built a little coop and put wood shavings in instead of a cardboard box and a towel.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Chicks have a field day

The baby chicks are getting older and even have some real feathers. It was 65+ degrees outside on Friday so we decided to introduce the chicks to the great outdoors.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

5 Fuzzy Chicks

It was sad, that there were no longer 13 chirping chicks, only 5. The box looked so empty and lonely since they were still so small compared to the size of the box. The good thing was they could now all eat from our hands at the same time, with-out having to be on top of each other. Also now we could recognize each individually and we named one Sunny. A couple days later when one chick (the Barred Rock) wasn't growing as many feathers as the others we called her Fluffy since she was still a fluff ball, and we still call her that now, but I think it will just be a temporary name.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Fuzzy Chick Continuation

Only the next morning would they eat from our hands and then they would all surround us and ten of them would eat at the same time. Sometimes a chick that was behind the wall of chicks would sort of fly/jump over other chicks and then push them out of the way so that, that chick could eat too. They were so cute just to watch but we had to go to school. It would be awful though, leaving the house there were 13, but when we got back there would only be 5. At noon someone (Mat) was coming to pick up 8, leaving us only 5. Since only my mother would be home we left him a note saying which chicks to take, he can take some feed, and a box to put them in if he didn't have one.
to be continued in a new post soon

Ugly Chickens

The first day it rained a lot the big chickens looked OK, but on the second day they were so ugly I wouldn't even pet them when they crouched down to let me. All the rain had clumped their feathers together and matted them all down. Luckily by the next morning they had dried off, and we had our beautiful, soft, cheerful chickens back.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Yesterday (Monday) we got 13 chicks from the Anisfeld's, the family the chicks were being mailed to. The chicks were actually delivered on Sunday, and they accidentally got 26 instead of 25. We brought over a box and they sorted out the breeds in order to give us the correct chicks. We got our 5 along with 8 other chicks for another family, who would pick them up from our house the next day. If you count our big chickens too, we had 18 chick/chickens, that a ton!
us we got:
-2 Black Austroloups
-1 White Buff Orphington
-1 Barred Rock
-1 more, but I forget what breed it is

For the other family we got:
-4 Rhode Island Reds
-4 Barred Rocks
Anyway, when we got home we rushed around setting up their lights, putting newspaper on the bottom of the box, and giving them food and water. They had to be 90-95 the first week and then lower it by 5 degrees each week. Also we had to give them special "chick gower" for 6-8 weeks, then "chick starter" from 8-20 weeks and then finally feed for (egg) layers. On Sunday we had cut a window in a big box and then covered it with chicken wire, but we had not gotten anything else ready (bad idea). Partly because we only expected to the get chicks on Tuesday.
After they chicks were comfortable we just watched them for a while and then we started holding them. They didn't run away all the time, just a little, and if they did run away a lot we wouldn't pick them up. After you had picked up a chick you then had to put one hand under their feet put them up against your chest and then cover the other side of them so the chick would stay warm. We also tried putting our hand in their box with a little bit of feed on but they wouldn't eat.

to be continued soon

Monday, March 8, 2010

The chicks are here!

13 happy chirping chicks arrived today. Miriam and Ronit are very busy taking care of them. They are cute as can be. See pictures at: picasaweb

From Baby Chicks

Monday, February 22, 2010

Sharing a Nesting Box

I wonder if two of our nesting boxes are too big, uncomfortable or close to the door to our chickens liking. When our chickens first started laying, they mostly used nesting box #3, but still used #1 and 2 a good amount. Now they practically never use #1 or 2, we probably only find one egg there every two days. Sometimes we we find twochickens in the same nesting box (always #3). Some of our chickens don't fill up all the room in one nesting box, but I think it must be pretty squishy when they share. They must really not like the other nesting boxes if they share so often. One reason why they like nesting box #3 more than the others may be because it is the farthest away from the door so no cold air comes in, and it not too big. Nesting box #2 is a bit bigger than the other too, and #1 is right next to the door, so neither of them are good. I sure hope that sharing nesting boxes isn't bad!
P.S. fuzzy chicks in 14 days!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Snow, Eggs, Chicks and perching

About a week ago when it was supposed to snow a lot I tied up a tarp to the aviary so the snow wouldn't go in. It didn't snow and a couple days later took down the tarp. Today it snowed but since we hadn't put the tarp back up I was afraid all the snow would go through and the chickens wouldn't have any unsnowcovered ground. Luckily, the snow didn't cover all the ground so the chickens were fine.

Today, we also got a huge egg. I know we've gotten very big eggs before, but this one makes those look small. And it actually is twice the size of some of our eggs and it doesn't fit in the carton.(when we put it in the carton top can't close all the way.)

It used to be that Revena (our older chicken) would perch on one side of the roost and squeeze the other four onto the other half. Then we added another roost and she moved to that one,sleeping all alone. We hoped another chicken would join her so she wouldn't be cold in the winter. Finally Serene (one of the Black Sex Links) did.But now they seemed to have switched places again - Revena on the old roost and the other four (two Rhode Island Reds and two Black Sex Links) on the newer roost.

I am so exited because we are getting 5 Fuzzy Chicks in only 20 days!!!!