Little Blessings in Spring

April 9th, 2010

I love morning in spring… everything is so cool and refreshing, and the sounds of the birds are amazing.   Life is scrambling everywhere it seems, and I feel that energy to start things that Iv’e been waiting for all winter.   The sun’s light quickly colors the landscape and the redbud trees are beautiful…

And there are other blessings too, or at least cute ones. Somehow I’ve always wanted to raise a few chickens. But I never said much about that, at least seriously. Then the boy comes along and tells me he wants to raise chickens. His mom not so much… but she at least thinks they’re cute, and likes looking at them- as long as I take care of them!   So I figure we’ll have a little project for a few years or more.   I’m not getting any younger- and the boy is growing older fast, so this is the perfect time.   I’m excited to introduce our new friends… a host of little chicks that will grow up to lay eggs.

So it seems I have another project to add to the list…. building a coop! They are doing well though, at about 2 1/2 weeks old. These little guys (girls!) are funny- they snuggle together to keep warm, and then chase each other all around when one of them appears to have something to eat that the others want.

There’s seven pullets and three from a “straight run” batch, or “pan fry special” where it’s a guess as to their sex. Overall for the hens I picked up three red sex-linked chicks which were cited as a cross between a Rhode Island Red and a Delaware (or other white) hen, a New Hampshire Red, two Buff Orpingtons and a “rainbow pullet” which looks like a Leghorn. The other three are made up of two Barred Plymouth Rocks (which I think are hens…), and a black colored chick which is anyone’s guess. I’m hoping it’s a rooster, as it just had that feel to it. The two Barred Rocks could be roosters as well, but by the coloration my guess is that they’ll be hens.

Aside from taking care of them,  the biggest challenge may be to keep them safe from predators- including our dogs and cats to begin with. The little shiba dog sat nearly drooling as he watched the little chicks running about for exercise the other day. I’ll have to build a stout coop and run for them. But we’ve got foxes, coyotes, racoons, owls and hawks of all kinds around the area. I’m looking forward to watching them grow, and sometime next fall we should have some healthy eggs.

With effort and a little luck, the peeps should grow up to have a good, happy life.  Ah yes, we’ll see.   But I’m not quite ready to count my… well, you know.

10 Responses to “Little Blessings in Spring”

  1. pamela

    Hurray! Everyone should have peeps in the backyard.

  2. josie

    Yeah, what a nice blessing for spring…and summer…and fall..and well..you know.

  3. Ed

    I enjoyed raising chickens back in the day. Our biggest problems were the birds wanting to roost outside on freezing cold nights, predators and our neighbor’s daughter’s car going down our gravel road. She alone probably took out 20 of our 100 chickens we had one year.

  4. Ellen

    Good luck! I’ve wanted to raise chickens for a few years now, but haven’t had the gumption to actually do it. Some day…I keep telling myself this. Meanwhile, I enjoy the fresh eggs from a neighbor’s flock.

  5. R. Sherman

    You should hope the title to your blog, i.e. “Fox Haven,” is not a foretaste of issues to come. I hope your dog is up to the task of protecting the new brood.


  6. Congratulations! Having a backyard flock is a wonderful experience.

    Great pictures!

  7. Pamela- Ha! I do hear a rooster or two from across the hills, and it’s nice. I think a lot more folks are getting chickens these days.
    Josie- Year ’round blessings! Hope so :)
    Ed- Neighbor’s daughter… that’s funny. Probably not at the time!
    Ellen- Thanks! I know exactly what you mean… I hope you do too (and glad to see you come by!) :)
    Randall- Yes, let’s hope not! I need to figure out how to make the shiba a protector instead of hunter too!
    Grace- Thanks too! I’m excited… I look foward to sharing their progress (Btw- I tried commenting on your site but it won’t let me use the name/url option? Not sure if you can change that? I don’t have a different id yet… :)

  8. Yes, congrats! Chicken are wonderful critters. Teach a person lots about themselves. Losses happen. Those fresh eggs sure beat the supermarket though! Congrats!


  9. yay chickens! they are a lot of fun. can’t wait to see them grow up!

  10. Ron- Thanks too! Yes indeed, lots to learn :)
    Chook- I knew they would bring you a smile!

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