Monday, July 23, 2012

Three Hens + Three Chicks = 1 Big Distraction

The three hens are done with the business of hatching eggs and are moving on to the job of raising chicks.

The three only managed to hatch out three chicks. I'm not sure if it was because they only had a few fertilized eggs, or, and I suspect this, that they were too busy stealing each others' nests and eggs that they weren't always sitting on all of the eggs.

But, they now have three chicks to raise. At feeding time, they were showing the chicks what to eat. They'd pick a piece of corn from the feeder, cluck to get a chick's attention, then drop the morsel in front of the chick.

The chicks scurried from hen to hen.

I took a break from my morning chores to watch this fascinating ritual. As the chicks grow older, the hens will catch the chicks moths and flies, and they'll show their brood how to scratch and search for food.

A hen uses quite the vocabulary to communicate with the chicks, and they seem to know what tones mean food and what means "danger, gather under me."

A gushing sound interrupted my viewing. Looking outside, I saw the sheep's water tank overflowing. Chick watching would have to wait.


  1. I loved your three chicks and three brooding hens. An interesting combination of sibs, or cousins or Aunties or Mom. LOL

    1. And you saw them first! I'm looking forward to seeing how this evolves.