03 July 2011

Little farm miracle

Today we had a lot going on as usual but after our walk Savannah spotted something new while collecting eggs. Our broody hen was off her nest and two of the eggs were cracked. After a bit of searching we found something sticking out from our broody girl's breast.

Can you see the sweet not yet one-day-old baby chick peeking out from beneath her mama's feathers? Here's another close up just in case.

Welcome baby! We are eager to see the colors of this one as it grows since it is half Buff Orpington and half Rhode Island Red. But this wasn't our only surprise. Then we discovered a second baby that had fallen outside of the coop, it was running around frightened and cold. As soon as we caught her and she felt our warmth, she quieted and fell asleep. We decided to bring her in the house to raise her in the brooder.  That way we can be certain she will have food, water, warmth and will not fall out of the coop again. And, she'll imprint on us.

Even Aunt Megan got to hold our new baby fluff ball. But there was another surprise. William had been asking over and over for milk while I was preparing the brooder. When Kevin went to the fridge to get his milk, he heard peeping from inside the fridge! He brought out our bowl of freshly collected eggs and I quickly did the water test on them. Two of the eggs floated right to the top so we scooped them out. Aunt Megan heard the peeping from inside one of the eggs too. I made a little "nest" for the eggs inside the brooder where it was warmest and guess who wanted to snuggle with her sisters?

The first egg on the left already has a small crack in it from baby sister's egg tooth. Tomorrow we expect to have two baby fluff balls in our brooder and possibly a third if the last egg was also fertilized. For us, this is quite the miracle because our rooster Lucky (who is lucky to be alive in the first place) has half a brain and doesn't exactly know what he's doing when he mounts a chicken. We see very few fertilized eggs. Ever. So we thought our poor broody girl was nesting in vain. We left her alone though to do her thing with her clutch of eggs and now she's got one lovely chick to raise as her own and we have two or three to raise our way. Tonight or tomorrow we expect to see the miracle of hatching. And soon enough all the siblings will be together again, grazing the land with their mama and each other.

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