Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Posted by Beth at 4:22 PM
Nine 4-week-old buff orpington pullets, six 4-week-old barred rock pullets, six 4-week-old rhode island red pullets, three 7 1/2-week-old rhode island red cockerels, and three 2-weekish-old rhode island red cockerels(we think). And by God's grace, they are living together under one roof in harmony.
What's that? Why the purple stripes? Did someone breed your chickens from parrots? No, no. It looks like it though. Around the three-week mark, the barred rocks and rhode island reds started picking on the buff orpingtons as their little feathers started being kind of pokey-outy (yes, that's a technical term). So, after rescuing 7 out of 9 tiny yellow birds from the cannibalism of their flock-mates, i decided to go ahead and spray the blue wound-kote product on all of their necks and tail-feathers for prevention. It worked too.
I think they like me. What do you think?
The flock is currently housed in this wonderful (i really love the design) outdoor brooder that my husband built out of a crate he got from work. It's huge, and he put it on legs, so it's easy access to clean and feed and check and whatnot. I'm really enjoying it.
Anyway, when i open the little door in the front to take care of business, this happens:
Initially, i thought i was going to have to house the three age groups separately for a while to keep them safe. But after some thought, experimentation, and prayerful consideration, i was able to combine all three groups. The littlest ones, who i was most concerned about, are the least bothered of anyone. The barred rock pullets, for some reason i can't figure out, think it's cool to peck the the big cockerels in the eye, but the big boys defend themselves pretty well, and so far, no blood.
Here is one of my favorite pictures. The tiniest, youngest of them all...i guess he was too short to catch that sunbeam on his own, so he jumped on someone's back and took a nap.
Here's the same one again, learning the ropes from Big Red: