Six Chicks (Something to Make You Say Aww)

We decided we would like to add more Jersey giant hens to our flock this year. Our second choice was buff orpingtons. We like both breeds but have found the Jersey giants to be a bit more cold-tolerant than the buffs.

When my husband went to the farm store Friday to see what breed of chicks they had in stock he did not find the black Jersey giants like we already have. They also did not have any buff orpingtons. They did have some white Jersey giants and told him they would be getting some black Jersey giants sometime this coming week. We decided we would get 6 white Jersey giants and he would return this week to get 6 of the black.

I would guess they were only 1 or 2 days old when he brought them home. Other than peeping, all they wanted to do was huddle under the heat lamp to stay warm.

Even though I dipped their beaks in the water, they ignored their water and food and pretty much stayed in their huddle.

The following morning, after I again dipped their beaks in the water and showed them their food, they began eating and drinking.

We discovered the smallest of the group had pasty butt (dried feces stuck to its butt). We had to soak it a few of times in warm water in order to remove all of the feces. If not taken care of that condition can quickly become deadly for the chick. Thankfully this little fluff ball seems to be doing well.

Thanks for visiting.

31 thoughts on “Six Chicks (Something to Make You Say Aww)

  1. I love the name “buff orpington” for a breed. Ruth, they sure are sweet. I am somewhat shocked that chicks would be separated from their mothers at such an early age. They don’t even get a chance to bond. Why do they take them at one or two days old?

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    1. Orpingtons also come in white, black and, blue I believe. The Buffs are the beautiful golden color. Chicks are rarely brooded by hens nowadays and I would be shocked to hear of a hatchery who did that. The eggs spend about 21 days in a climate-controlled incubator. Once they hatch they are sexed within the first day and shipped out. New chicks can go 1-3 days without eating so hatcheries ship them early so teaching them to eat/drink becomes someone else’s responsibility. Since there is no mother to teach them to eat and drink I had to dip their beaks in the water and show them the food. We also use the heat lamp to keep them warm until they get their feathers since there is no Momma to keep them warm.

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      1. That was interesting Ruth. I didn’t realize that the eggs were artificially incubated instead. I saw you mentioned dipping their beaks in the water and thought it interesting you had to show them how to drink. Do they drink the almond milk too or is the carton in there for another reason? You get your dose of cuteness every day.

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      2. Many breeds have had the brooding instinct bread out of them. When the hens go broody they do not produce eggs for at least three weeks and if they raise the chicks it would be more like 3 months.
        It is precious to see a hen caring for and teaching her brood but the industry is not looking for precious.

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      3. That is interesting to read too Ruth. I hear about broody hens from you and Kim (Red Dirt Farms) and a UK blogger I’ve followed for a while. I had no idea there was no mothering process like other animals and birds.

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      4. They do not drink the almond milk. We cut out the side of the carton so the chicks can go inside or they can climb on top of it. Just a play thing we do for the chicks. ๐Ÿ™‚

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