Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Alien Night Light

When you have a chick brooder in your home, there's no need for a night light.
Our high tech brooder consists of an old rabbit cage surrounded by aluminum foil and cardboard, warmed by a hundred watt bulb with a pie tin reflector topped by an old cookie sheet.  Our chicks are currently at a toasty ninety degrees. They get to stay in their cozy brooder for another month and a half or so, until they have fully fledged (gotten all their feathers).

I'm not sure chicks get bored, but they have certainly begun to play games like queen-of-the-hill with their water jar and chase-the-chick-with-the-paper-scrap.  That is, when they're not napping or pooping.  I'm changing their paper three times a day now and they've begun to recognize the door as an escape route.  Obviously we handle them a lot and I've also begun to offer chick scratch feed in my hand regularly.  (Chick pecks tickle!) We want them to be well-mannered hens who associate only positive things with human hands.

These chicks miss NOTHING.  When they roam our kitchen, they remind me of the raptors in Jurassic Park.  I know they're bird brains, but when they get "that look" in their eye, stretch out their neck then dart like predators...let's just say I don't want to be an insect invading our yard this summer.  Maybe I could hire them out as organic bug exterminators for big bucks? They are very soft and cute, but food really motivates them!

I'm loving the names you're coming up with for my four girls who are destined as egg layers.  Four hens,  each laying one hundred fifty eggs per year (conservatively), would mean we'll have six hundred (or fifty dozen) eggs.  I can still eat and enjoy chicken--but it feels a bit odd with our four little peeps just a few feet away from the table.  Thank heavens I'm not on a first name basis with anyone at Foster Farms!


1 comment:

  1. What a lucky girl you are. Your chickies are adorable...I can see why you would think twice about eating chicken. lol