The baby chicks have arrived!!! We really didn't think they would because (as previously mentioned) a couple weeks after getting them PE had found Blueberry sitting on the fresh eggs while the hatching eggs (the ones with an "X" on them) sat cold.
We were pleasantly surprised one day when PE was feeding the animals (as he does every evening when he gets home from work) and he found the chicks walking around with Blueberry in the coop. All the egg shells had been pushed off to the side and stacked (who knew chickens were so tidy). There are seven total; three black, two gray, one light yellow, and one yellow with brown markings on the back. We don't know what kind they are but as they get older we will be able to tell. Most, if not all, of them are mixes but we can make pretty good guesses. All the chicks are so cute when they are young. They are fluffy and since we have kept Blueberry and them together it is funny to see them hop on her back and ride around occasionally.
It is also sort of funny that they go through an awkward "teenage" phase where the baby fluff goes away and is replaced by feathers and they look so gangling and awkward. Then they are like young adults and are skinny and don't have all the bulk of an adult. It has been interesting to see. The one exception so far has been Spike. Those curly feathers never looked awkward but I think GooGoo may always look a little awkward with the fro he/she will be rocking.
I had been waiting to post until Bob named the chicks which he finally did the other night. The gray ones are Gandalf and Shadow. The black ones are Frodo, Sam, and Merry. The light yellow one is Pippen and the yellow one with brown markings is Bilboa. After naming three of them with names from The Lord of the Rings we sort of encouraged him to keep with that theme. (Bilboa and Pippen were originally Cheese and Noodle. Yes, they had homemade macaroni and cheese for lunch that day.)
Blueberry is such a good mama. She fluffs all up and clucks at them to get under her wings when we get too close. In the past when she was sitting on eggs she has pecked us as we were getting the eggs. It didn't hurt--I don't think she was giving it her all. Now, on the other, hand she bites as she pecks and does not want you lifting her off of those babies. (I have just heard about it from PE.)
It has been fun to watch the chicks and Blueberry. The funniest/cutest have been when we have seen them riding on her back or when one is under her wing and all of the sudden you see a little head peak out from in between her feathers.
The biggest problem created by the addition of these babies is that the Frizzle (Spike) and Silkie (GooGoo) have been picked on quite a bit. They are smaller breeds in the first place but add to it that they aren't full size yet so the other four chickens we purchased this year are having a heyday picking on them since they were picked on when we put them with last years chickens. Spike and GooGoo are still alive so we are thinking it should all be okay.
Yesterday, PE moved Blueberry and the babies into the large coop and is planning on moving the pheasants to the small coop outside so we can finally clean the garage and have it look like a place you park your cars instead of a barn. The two biggest differences between chicken chicks and pheasant chicks is that pheasant chicks are FAST and they can fly at two to three weeks. They are so fast and skittish that there was no getting a picture of them. In leu of that I have pictures of the other chickens.