"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Monday, March 30, 2009

Bad News/Good News on the Chicken Front

I checked the calendar, and the eggs that the black hen has been sitting on were supposed to hatch four days ago. Clearly, they will never hatch. Poor black mama hen, she's starving to death. She won't get off those eggs for love or money (or more accurately, for food or water). 

The chicken book says there are only two things to do: first, I could try slipping some day old baby chicks under her in the dead of night, and removing the eggs. She might wake up and be fooled into thinking they are her very own chicks. But that only works sometimes, not all the time. If it doesn't, the only other option is to break up the nest, scatter the straw, break all the eggs (with half- formed chicks in them, ewww) and hope for the best. She might just keep going and sitting on anything round she can find until she dies. 

So of course I drove all over hell and gone today looking for day old baby chicks. Most of the feed stores had no chicks at all; there's been a run on them, apparently. The economic apocalypse and all. The only store that chicks at all close to my house had only week old meat birds, and they were half as big as black mama hen already. I had to drive all the way to Nooksack to find some that might work. They are four days old, but they are bantams, so they are still very small. That's the good news: Rowan adores bantams and has been asking for some forever. For now, they are under a heat lamp in a cardboard box. After dark Rowan and I will attempt the transfer. Wish us luck. 


AnyEdge said...

That is the saddest chicken related thing I've ever heard. I hope all goes well.

TheMartianChick said...

Good luck with the switcheroo. I think that she'll accept them.

ChristyACB said...

Oh gosh, I sure hope that works! It would be a shame to have her go for want of a babe to care for. That is just so shakespearean in it's tragedy, don't you think?

Let us know soonest! I think it might be funny to see the look on her face when she pops up and sees chickies! LOL.