Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Baby Chick - Guber - Growing in a Shoebox

As I've mentioned earlier, we not only purchased baby chicks from a hatchery but we are also raising chicks from special breeds who are being hatched under setting hens.

Early this week, on a bitter cold day, an egg cracked under the hen and the chick worked hard to get out but couldn't. I brought the egg into the house and had to clip open the membrane inside the shell so the chick could hatch. It was rolled up onto itself, wet, messy, bloody, and peeping like crazy! I got a shoebox, lined it with paper towels and a folded blue towel that it could hide under, like a hen, and turned on the under counter kitchen light and put it there to warm up, dry off, and start being a chick. Note of interest: A baby chick will live for 3 days without food or water which is why chicks can be mailed through the Post Office and ,of course, they can only be shipped within a three day delivery range.

A little handful of fluff, all dried and still peeping
Look closely and you will see the little chick looking
directly at you! Guber is in the shoebox nursery all
warm including a heated rice bag and light above.

So back to the baby chick, it flourished and on day three, I dunked it's beak into water and it began drinking. I put baby chick feed on the floor of the shoebox and it began to eat. And it never stopped peeping until I covered the box at night so it would sleep and we could sleep!

Mark would come into the house during the day and ask how Guber was doing! I guess this chick got a name during the shoebox stage!

The chick is eating and drinking on it's own;notice
Guber is now in a bigger box
After about four days Guber's peeping seemed louder and more stressed so I went to town and bought a feather duster. Guber calmed down, cuddled into the feather duster, slept under the feather duster and overall accepted it as company. Who knew?
Here is the chick with the feather duster friend
Guber finally grew big enough to move to the nursery in the barn with the 20 other chicks who will be giving us eggs.

Pretty big in one week, time to move to the big
nursery in the barn

Guber fit right in and now we can't really identify her in the flock. As it should be. No names for hens outside of the house. You don't want to mourn them if nature takes them away one day.


Janet said...

Guber is very cute. Raised on the farm but didn't know about the three day thing even though mom got her chicks in the mail, I guess. And aren't we all happy to see some sun and I hope warmer weather soon. Good luck with all your new babies.

Sandi said...

You are the ultimate chicken Mom! What a darling recap of Guber's first days on the ranch. Loved it!