Sunday, 13 July 2014

Outside Chicks

The baby chooks have now spent their second night outside in the Cube.  They aren't ready to be comletely off-heat for another week, so the  larger Electric Hen was in the back of the Cube with them, and on, of course.   

 When they were in the shed brooder at night they had both the small electric hen and the brooder lamp on. The brooder lamp was on very low power (only about 10-20%),  but it still gave them a bit of light which means that they hadn't learnt to sleep overnight. This means they have no concept, yet, of bed time.

Last night we waited until nearly 9pm. It was still quite warm, but the light was about to fade, so we popped them in through the egg port.   We'll probably be egg porting them for another day or two, as trying to shuffle chicks up ladders is like trying to herd cats.  If they don't start going of their own accord, we will do it.

I noticed this morning (by the location of the poo) that they aren't sleeping under or near the hen.  It hasn't been that cold at night.   I think we probably have had them out a week earlier in the past, but the weather this year has just been too variable.

This morning it was raining, so we let them out into the covered Cube run, bit didn't open the door to the wider world until much later.    I also moved the Hen on to the grass for them, as I'm not convinced they'd think of going upstairs if they got chilly.

Yesterday they started bosom-bumping,  and today there are lots of little square-off matches going on.  This means that they will get the pecking order sorted out without too much trouble.  

There's not much chance of them needing to go back in the shed brooder, so I dismantled the mesh sides, finished sweeeping it out, and took up the floor.  It's currently laid out on the grass as rain is likely, and that will be a start to getting it clean.  I'll pressure wash and disinfect it later this afternoon.

Here's a quick pic of Big Bird and friend,  eyeing up something in the grass.

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