Sunday, 3 July 2011

Two weeks old and growing.

No post yesterday as I was out at a coffee morning with a friend in the morning and all afternoon busy getting ready to host last night's dinner party. So no post but a pleasant dinner party with good friends, a nice chat and the knowledge that the farmer is brilliant at stacking the dishwasher and washing up surplus dishes afterwards!

Yesterday the chicks were two weeks old and they have doubled in size and also gained such confidence that they charge about in the run and go in and out of the chick house with or without their mother. Another couple of weeks and we should be able to tell which are hens and which cocks because their combs grow more quickly if they are male.
Then comes the thorny problem of what to do with the males, as nobody wants them. The farmer, however, has said that as their father is a very large Buff Orpington male, they should be big enough to rear for the table. Oh dear me - I shall have to cross that bridge when I come to it.

The farmer has gone walking today in the Dales. I have been to a friend's house for coffee, where we sat in the garden in the lovely sunshine. She has a very shy rescue dog so I took Tess along as we are trying hard to make her dog (Topsy) become less frightened and more sociable. Hopefully it seems to be working. She is such a lovely dog - some people have a lot to answer for in the way they treat dogs as she came to J as a totally traumatised dog, terrified of men. Now I don't think she can quite believe the love and care she is getting.

Incidentally - for those who asked - Goldie, the hen who has sat on the eggs and is now rearing the chicks, is not necessarily their mother. One or two of the eggs may or may not be Goldie's. The eggs merely come from the nest boxes in the hen house and could belong to any one of the birds. One thing for sure though - she is looking after them like a mother.


Pondside said...

.....and what a good mother she is. Our girls are traumatised, for now, by the presence of four new little hens in the coop. They're all flapping and squawking and refusing to lay. Things will settle down, but until them we're keeping them separated by some wire.

Titus said...

What evolutionary advantage was it for chicks to be among the cutest things on earth? Lovely shots, and all the best to your friend for her dog.

angryparsnip said...

Thank You so much for the wonderful photos.
The chicks are really growing up, getting so big !
Goldie is looking really great too. Motherhood is looking good on her.

cheers, parsnip

Dartford Warbler said...

What a beautiful day for walking in the Dales. I hope the Farmer had a wonderful time.

Your friend is doing a great thing with her rescue dog.
I hope their are not too many cockerels in Goldie`s new family!

Tom Stephenson said...

You seem to be making a much better job of it than John Gray, Weaver.

MorningAJ said...

One of the problems of being married to a farmer is that sometime's you're going to meet your food before it's oven-ready.

If they have a good life and aren't cooped up all day in tiny pens you'll have done all you can for them and you won't need to feel guilty. Unless you decide to go vegetarian and make pets of them, of course!

The Weaver of Grass said...

Pondside - Yes - there is always a pecking order and they have to find it don't they?

Titus - I find chicks the cutest things too - until I see a duckling, or a lamb, or a calf. I suppose it is nature's way of making us keep wanting the breed and keep the species going - it makes us go broody.

Parsnip - the chicks grow daily. They have to be quite big before we can let them out because of the sparrow hawk.

Dartford Warbler - the farmer got very sunburnt. As for cockerels - I expect it will be the law of Sod.

Tom - oh dear - that remark is set to put the cat among the pigeons, or in John's case the fox among the hens. I think because my chics are in a walled garden as well as a run, they are relatively safe - by you never know. I always think John gives his animals such a lot of love - not sure i could love a goat.

Yes, Morning AJ - do agree but last time we tried it I couldn't eat it.

Jenn Jilks said...

Adorable! We've had 31 C. temps for a few days. It really takes it out of you!