Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Baby brother

This morning, we took the big yellow brooder away, put a lower hen in the chick brooder area,  and let Number 6 out to meet his brothers and sisters.    We stood watching.

It couldn't have gone better.

He was a nuisance.  He was fascinated by them all, and was constantly pecking their feet, their beaks, their feathers.    Some of them just moved away.    Penguin,  who is the Legbar/Leghorn cross and has hugely developed feathers,  didn't retaliate at all.  Brownie gave a few warning pecks.    The others pecked Number 6 back when he pecked them.   Number 6 kept jumping up and pecking Brownie,  and then he followed Brownie around for a while.

After about 10 minutes we could see that there was not likely to be any deliberate trouble.  The only concern was accidental damage.  He is so tiny compared to the rest of them, and that's because his mum is a tiny girl.

The others let him eat with them, let him run round with them.     We watched on the camera from the house,  so we could see what they did when we weren't there.   He continued to be a pest, and they continued to be very tolerant.

He should have been sleeping every few minutes, but he didn't. He kept up with them.  He wasn't able to get on the hen, it's a bit high for him to get up at the mo.  There were only a few on there at a time, so he didn't miss out.

I turned the light out at about 6.30,  so there was only the light from the heat lamp.  I checked the camera every half hour or so, or when I heard cheeping on the baby monitor.

There was one point where they were all asleep.  Most of them were together, slightly away from the heat of the lamp.  He was directly under the lamp (he needs more heat than the rest),  one was under the hen, and one was away from the lamp completely ....

...I looked a few minutes later and saw that the largest chick, Brownie,   had settled down beside him.

That was an incredibly kind thing for him to do, because under the lamp is probably a bit too warm for Brownie.

Sometimes they can be so darned lovely.

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