Saturday 2 April 2022

Hatch Day! Say Hello to my baby chicks!

I woke to peeping on Friday March 11 morning which was a massive surprise since Hatch Day was actually the next day. In total, I got three cute little chicks from six eggs. 1 egg was a dud, 1 egg I had dropped and 1 egg failed in its hatch. 

Two chicks had hatched overnight. The larger black coloured one and a teeny tiny little yellow chick. Both were still covered in fluid from the egg, so their feathers were matted down. For the first few hours, they would peep for a little bit and fall asleep as I am sure the hatching was exhausting. Near the end of the day, both were lively and full of energy. I had stepped out of the house in the evening and when I returned, the duo had turned into a trio with the addition of another tiny yellow chick. 

As much as I wanted to remove the chicks from the incubator, I was told to leave the chicks for 24 hours. The warmth and humidity help their feathers dry off and become fluffy but also give them time to gain some more strength in their little legs. 

Before heading off to bed I saw a small hole in another large egg. It is not easy for a chick to hatch and can take up to 24 hours to complete. I had my fingers crossed that I would wake up to a fourth little one in the morning, but it was not the case. It is best to not assist chicks in hatching as it is imperative for them to struggle because that is how they build up their strength. Often times chicks that you aide in the hatch do not end up making it, so it is best to let them do their own thing. I reached out to my contact and was told to slowly pick away a third of the shell and put it back in the incubator. Sadly the chick never ended up hatching which is never fun. 

The 5th and 6th eggs did not end up hatching either. One of the eggs I had dropped during candling, so it is completely my fault. The final egg just ended up being a total dud. 

I ended up with 3 cute little chicks and I could not be happier. 

Batman is the larger black-feathered Barred Rock Chicken. The smaller yellow chicks came from eggs that were half the size of a "normal" egg. Both are Silkie Bantam Chickens - only three farms in all of Canada have Silkie Bantams! These little birds are quite rare and valuable. 

After 24 hours in the incubator, I was able to remove the three chicks from the incubator and move them to their new home - a giant plastic bin with substrate, heater, water and food. All of this was provided by the organization!

I am obsessed with my tiny flock of chickens. I will have them for another week before they return back to the farms. 


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