Friday, April 27, 2012

The Newbies Are Here!

Remember how I said I was getting 8?  Well . . .

After some phone calls this morning, we were up and running.  Teresa got the shipment a couple of days ago, and was expecting the Faverolles to come in today.  We arranged to meet.  Of course, I also picked up some chicks to drop off to Keena on the way home, and a WHOLE BUNCH for Candace to meet me to pick up.  Just call me the chicken tractor.

In truth, I had forgotten that I arranged with Candace to get another Phoenix hen.  OK, no problem.  I have been saving my egg money (and asparagus money!) to fund my addiction.  I plugged in the brooder heat lamp this morning and it started to smoke.  NOT GOOD.  So, I unplugged it, went out to do chores (yeah, you try using a pitchfork in a lightning storm), waited for it to cool off, and cleaned it.  Problem solved.

Then there was getting my son ready for the drive to Wichita.  Have you ever noticed that kids never need to use the bathroom until you're 15 miles down the road?  Yeah.  Still, away we went.  I tried not to give the speed limit a compound fracture, but I was getting excited . . .and for good reason!

Not only was meeting Teresa in person really cool (she's a great lady and really arranged this whole thing, bless her!!), but I got to see some awesome chicken people again.  My son was even behaving well on the hours-long trip in the truck.  Of course, I got told about Spiderman a lot, and every train we passed was a momentous event . . .I'm glad that he had fun.
We got Keena her chicks while she was at work.  It was great meeting her coworkers.  Since she works for a greenhouse, I had to literally sit on my hands so I didn't haul the credit card out and buy everything.  Folks, if you're in Kansas, Kaw Valley has some awesome stuff.  I ALMOST left with a fountain, some succulents, and some black petunias, but apparently I'm getting better at saying NO to myself.

I had a blonde moment.  I took the wrong turn, or, didn't take the RIGHT turn.  I found myself 5 miles out in unfamiliar territory.  Gack.  I got turned around and eventually found the right road.  I hauled butt back to Marion, where I was to meet Candace.  Dangit, I hate being late.

Arthur was dozing, as I wished I could, but we made it in time.  The hen she brought me took my breath away.  OK, so Maki the Magnificent is a Silver Duckwing Yokohama roo, and Sushi the Sweet is a white Phoenix pullet.  I had been dithering about names for the new girl, but as soon as I saw her, I knew what her name had to be.  She's Miso.  Her feathers really look like a bowl of miso soup that I get at my favorite Japanese restaurant (Hana, in Wichita).  She is STUNNING.  She's a golden Phoenix.  Maki immediately started dancing for her.  She bloodied her comb a little bit on the trip in, but Maki is such a gentleman that he's ignoring it.  (mind you, I've checked in on them several times tonight.)  And Candace even did me one better.  She was talking about Phoenix chicks.  I figured why not?  What's a couple more?  Hey, it's a different bloodline which is good.  Sure, I was willing to pay a couple bucks for 2 of them.  This nifty lady and her hubby decided to give me 2 chicks (which will probably be white) for FREE.  If I could hug her, I would.

I feel like a pro at getting chicks settled in now.  Dip their beaks in the waterer and wait till they swallow some.  Paper towels over bedding.  Food scattered.  Even though I know that some are a little older, they should all come out to the same size.  So, with chicken math, I "started" with 8 and came home with 10.  It must be the mileage.  Still, it's fun to watch the bitty babies do laps around the brooder . . .I put in some fresh greens and they'd all chase the one that got the best tidbit.  Then they'd start again! 

I'll bet you're wanting to see pictures.  Luckily for you, I have some.  The red light is the brooder lamp, and some are a little fuzzy.

Chickies getting sleepy

Salmon Faverolle chick (with dye from the hatchery)

Ancona chick

That's all you get for tonight.  I WILL inundate you with more (and higher-quality) pics as they grow.  For anyone wondering, the "teenagers" out in the tractor are doing great.  I've had to do some creative tarp work, but they're alive and kicking!

Here she is, Miss Miso.  This pic REALLY doesn't do her justice.  She's very alert and active, her feathers shine in the sunlight, and she's already started laying eggs for me.  LOVE!!!

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