Monday, 21 March 2016

The Chicken Diaries - Week 11

Not much to report, except the kids chasing the chickens around all the time has made them a little wary of being picked up! Slow movements are not too bad, I can get Cacciatore and Mary with slow movement but the other two are like little squawking rocket chickens!

But nobody escapes me and so I wrestled the chickens for their weekly photo.

Bubbles weighing in at 795g this week (put on 82g this week compared with 113g the previous week) is looking very Araucana-ey with the little cheek tufts. I inspected her comb again and it definitely only has the one row, so I'm hoping we have a girl. She is very loud with her chicken grrawww noise compared to the others who still have a bit of baby cheep.
Cacciatore is trailing the pack by a big margin now - she weighs 744g (and has put on  81g this week compared to 91g the previous week). It wouldn't surprise me if she was a bantam except that she came from the same hatching as Spot and Bubbles, so maybe she is at the bottom of the pecking order or something.
Gorgeous little Mary eats like a champ and is now a whopping 821g (having put on 155g this week compared to 124g last week). Though, when we went to the easter show and saw the size of a full sized light Sussex they were VERY BIG CHICKENS!
Spot has cracked the 1kg mark! He's put on 125g this week (pretty much the same as his 124g the previous week). I had a hell of a time chasing him around the yard and coop, he's a slippery little sucker!
We went to the Royal Easter Show on the weekend and spent a lot of time in the Poultry Pavillion, with the kids thrilled to see chickens and eggs. A comment made by HK when he was looking at the chickens was "Why do the egg laying ones look so much healthier than the meat birds?" The Hy-Line egg layers were brown and the meat breeds were white, and the meat ones just looked young and maybe not fully feathered. They probably WERE young, since meat birds are supposed to be ready to slaughter at 35 days, whereas egg layers need 18 weeks at least before they can start laying. Those meat birds did have big legs, but the purebreeds were lovely to look at, I think. No wonder everyone keeps bantams in their backyards!

I have been thinking about what breeds of chicken I would like to get, and if the Sussex temperament are anything to go by I'd love to have a whole flock of them!  Look at the marvellous colours they come in!

Buff Sussex
Speckled Sussex
Silver Sussex
This is like Lego.. you can't have just one, you want to get more!

Even though I clipped their wings, Spot is still flying onto the roof of the coop! Well, just the egg part, and so far he hasn't run away or tried to escape (though I have been told the chickens have been jumping and squeezing out through the higher, bigger holes in the Omlet fence, but running by themselves back in again). Hopefully he won't fly away!

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