Chickens Farm Life

Spring Chicks 2017

February 10, 2017

Who doesn’t love blue eggs?  I really like having a nice blue egg mixed in with my other brown eggs.   I was looking for other breeds of chickens that lay blue eggs.  Right now I have Ameraucana hens.  I get a few shades of light brown almost pinkish in color and two lay greenish blue and one lays a really nice blue egg.  The hen that lays the blue egg wants to lay eggs everywhere but the coop.  I started looking at other breeds that lay a blue egg and found the Whiting True Blue.  This breed of chicken not only lays a blue egg but is also a good egg layer.  Win. Win.  

 

So this year we decided to get an incubator.  We did some research and bought the Brinsea Octogon20.  I have never done this before so it was really exciting.  I started looking for fertile eggs on craigslist to see what was in my area.  Bam! There it was an ad for the Whiting True Blue.  I messaged the breeder and told her what I was looking for this breed and couldn’t believe I found some locally!  

 

 I arranged to meet her to pick up some fertilized eggs from her farm.  She had some really neat breeds of chickens.  After the tour I ended up with a dozen of a few different breeds. Whiting True Blue, Double Laced Barnvelder and Apennzeller Spitzhauben.   

Appenzeller Spitzhauben

Appenzeller Spitzhauben

INCUBATION

We printed out a date sheet that told us what to do for the 21 days.  Some of the days require candling eggs to see if they are growing.  I have to say when we did our first candling it was really exciting.  You could see the baby chicken starting to grow and the veins in the yolk sac getting larger.

 

We followed the instructions on the incubator. We didn’t think about this, but  Saturday happen to be day 21, hatch day!  I was happy it was a weekend or I think I would of been taking a personal day to watch the eggs hatch!   I patiently waited and finally we have our first chick trying to get out.  I was really impressed that it could make a pecking circle around the egg to get itself out.  There it was our first Whiting True Blue was out of it’s shell!  As the day went on most of the eggs have hatched, except four eggs.  Day 22 another hatched but we still had 3 left. One had a small pip mark on the shell but nothing was happening.  I didn’t really know if I should wait it out or not.   I did know that the chick that just hatched was still wet and needed to dry off.  It was getting late and we decided to goto bed.  The next morning there another chick had hatched, only this time it was really weak.  The poor little thing could not roll over and was stuck on it’s back.  We waited but nothing was getting any better.  After watching the little girl try to walk I noticed it had spraddle leg. 

From what I have read it can happen when the humidity gets too high.  There are several youtube videos where you take some bandages to keep the feet from spraddling outward.  You keep this on the baby birds feet/leg area until it gets a bit stronger.  After you take off the bandage it should be standing correctly.  We had some problems with that, it worked but not as  fast as most of the articles said.

 This little baby was so tiny compared to the other chicks, we named her Pip Squeak.  Pip for short.  What a little cutie, but not intimidated by the other chicks when she finally got to hang out with rest.

 

  Our first incubation we hatched 16 chicks not sure how many roos but time will tell.   Our local farm store happened to be getting in some black sex-link pullets so I got a few of them.  I wanted to make sure there would be some hens.  

 

Baby chicks are ready to be moved to the garage where Jason made a nice big box to keep them in. 

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