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Chick saga finally comes to an end

May 8, 2009

Well, the babies arrived this morning.  After my call, they decided to send them priority mail, which is not the best thing.  The people in charge of priority mail have made it to the cushy job by seniority and sometimes not always by being the best workers.  So my babies were stuck in the postal system.  Regular chick mail would have gotten them to our post office in about 13 hours, but priority mail took 36 hours.  Does it make difference?  Yes!  Chicks can survive as long as 72 hours after hatch without water and food and rest, but there is a difference between surviving and thriving.  Oh, and I almost forgot, they charged me more per chick for the second shipment and extra shipping to boot!  Must be nice to be the only game in town.

I hate mixing ages of chickens, even a few days difference.  Their needs can vary widely and so today since we have sun, the brooder is very warm.  But the first chicks are already wanting the temperature a little lower, and the new ones because of the stress they have experienced want it a little higher.  So the chicks are having to compromise a bit.  I have opened one door for a little cool air, and turned off one light.  So far, so good.


Butt inspection for the day – all clear!


Newest arrivals, looking very sleepy.


Black Sex Link pullets.  It has been a long time since I have had any hens of this breed.  They were beautiful and good egg layers.  They are a cross between Rhode Island Red and Barred Rock.  Note the wing feathers, I’ll explain in a bit.


More trauma, this time inflicted by me.  These guys have all had their beaks dipped in water and then the food.  Note the wing tips on these Cornish.  When they stick out, and really show at this age, that is a sign of stress.  Hopefully the feathers will look better after they are settled in.


Hard to believe this will turn into a hen in such a short time.


These are the “old” chicks, their long wing feathers are lying flat and barely showing.  No baby stuff for them, they are headed to the “forest.”


Much more interesting in here!

15 Comments leave one →
  1. May 8, 2009 12:28 pm

    The baby chicks are really adorable. It astonishes me how utterly incompetent the post office can be. I once had a package “overnighted” to me by the post office from Connecticut to my house, a grand total of 142 miles. It took 3 days, and cost $10.75. Brilliant, guys, brilliant. I wonder why the post office is covered in red ink?

  2. May 8, 2009 12:38 pm

    You never cease to amaze me Nita. Your knowledge, wisdome, patience and photography skills just teach me so much.

    Could those chicks be any cuter?

  3. May 8, 2009 12:44 pm

    Poor little babies! Sometimes the post office can be so frustrating. We have to use it when we blood type bulls sometimes..nothing but a pain. Hope they come through all right!

  4. May 8, 2009 1:05 pm

    I just love little baby chicks! ❤ Poor little tykes — having to endure a birdie version of the Oregon Trail. They are just darling, and I’m so glad they all arrived alive. Oh gee, I fear I covet your little flock. I actually like grown chickens, too. I just read something about an Portland Coup Tour where folks who raise the fluffy beasties in their back yards allow people to come and see how they manage to raise egg layers in the city. Supposedly, the participants adhere to “natural” and organic raising methods, and no roosters are allowed. Speaking of which, I don’t know if hubby will allow himself to be dragged to that, oops, I mean accompany me on the tour. Can’t wait to watch your little ones grow. Oh, and I love the butt inspection. 🙂

  5. May 8, 2009 5:19 pm

    Oh, the butt check photo is just too adorable! I’m glad they are all there and doing okay so far.

  6. May 8, 2009 9:39 pm

    We picked up ours at the local feed store. First timers and I figured that since they were there a few days that they must have made the shipment OK. I am still hesitant to buy and have shipped. Next batch of chicks might be from a local breeder and I would go get them in person.

  7. May 8, 2009 9:46 pm

    so cute when they are chicks. So NOT when they get big.

    I never knew about the butt check business — until my daughter got chicks this spring.

    I think our mama hens raised all our chicks, so mama must have done the butt checks?

  8. May 9, 2009 2:56 am

    I think it is a bunch of bull that they charged you more for their mistake. I love the picture of the chick in the grass. They were all great pictures. The chicks are so adorable when they are little. You will have to take more pictures of the blacks when they are bigger. I will be interested to know what they look like.

  9. May 9, 2009 3:04 am

    Seniority sucks…unless you have a lot of it.

  10. May 9, 2009 3:10 am

    They are so tiny! I’m glad they are settling in and I’m sure the stress effect of transport will wear off soon. The last pic, amid the grass, it just grabbed my eye.

  11. May 9, 2009 3:14 am

    Oh, side note, I made the granola you posted on Simple… Co-op and it is *amazing*. No other word. Most of the batch was gone within 1/2 hour after it came out of the oven!

  12. May 9, 2009 6:48 pm

    I am curious about the recycled horse bedding you use with your chickens. What, exactly is it that you’re using? I have 6 chickens and use only shavings in their coop, but my son cleans horse stalls every day at a nearby farm. Am I missing a great recycling opportunity?

  13. May 10, 2009 1:28 pm

    When I worked at the post office, we worked in the big processing plant, where mail came in from all over, got sorted and then sent to the smaller local post offices by zip numbers. It was always nice to see the chicks come in, and the bees, butterflies and once, swans. The swan story was tough, they came from Michigan– full grown adult pair and for reasons unknown, took 5 days to get to my post office from Mich. They had no food or water and poor swans could barely keep their heads up. I checked the address, they were headed not too far from where I lived! I volunteered to take them to their destination rather than let them sit in the post office for another day just to wait for the local mail truck to pick up their mail for that location, but the dock manager was able to call the people at the address and they came and got them within the hour. I often wondered about the swans and hope they came out ok.

    Inside knowledge of how the post office works helps me to really consider what I mail and how I mail it.

    Hope your chicks will be ok.

  14. May 11, 2009 11:18 am

    How do you ever get anything done? I’d be sitting there and having so much fun watching the show, far too long 🙂


  15. May 13, 2009 6:15 am

    Awesome chick photos! Our chicks arrive today, so we are putting the finishing touches on their little room….the rhubarb recipe sounds fantastic too! I’ll have to try it….


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