Sunday, March 1, 2009

Baby Peeps

Yesterday Melanie ordered our baby Chickens. We are getting the baby Peeps from Cackle Hatchery. They will hatch by May 4 at the Hatchery which in Lebanon, Missouri, and promptly be in the mail. Those little Peeps should arrive at the Post Office here on May 5 or 6. Our order includes: 50 White Rock Roosters and 5 Black Australorp Pullets. The Roosters are the "meat" or table birds. The Pullets will be added to the laying flock.

We are hopeful that one of our Hennies will hatch out a clutch of Buff Orpington Chicks about that same time. "Setting a Hen" will be a first for us on Butterfly Hill Farm. We will be letting the Chickens do it their way with a little help from the Humans. We are kind of "in a flutter" about all of this. We are filled with excitement, yet a kind of "unknowing" about something that comes natural to Chickens, at least so we think.

Melanie is the lead on this process. She has been reading a lot. She and Richard have been pulling together what they know from reading, experience, and observation of our mostly contented little Flock. I am the reporter here.

Melanie and Richard have been talking about the best Chickens for our little initiative. Plus, we are trying to do this "in the sign". When the time is right, Freddie with about 5 select Hennies will be ushered to what usually is the Rooster House. I suppose you could call it the Honeymoon Hotel. The entourage will spend a few days doing what Chickens do.

We are hopeful that Freddie is fertile. Roosters who have had frost on their combs can be infertile for a time. That could be a big hurdle for our plan.

When we have collected the right number of eggs (about 12), we need to find just the right Mama Hennie. Lacy is the 1st choice and has many desirable features, at least from our view. She has a presence that you don't mess with. She wants kids. That is pretty evident because she is broody a lot of the time. She (or another designee) will be sitting on the Eggs. In about 21 days, we should Baby Peeps if all goes right.

At this point, the Hennie will be in the brooder house that Richard built last summer. That darling little House with its tiny little triangular yard is just waiting for its new role on the Farm.

These days, you could call us "expectant". This will be our 3rd summer ordering Baby Peeps and picking them up at the Post Office. Setting a Hennie is new for us. This brand new adventure is taking us to a place we 3 Humans have not been before. It seems a far cry from our former life in the City. While there, we just bought Chickens and Eggs from a store.

(Note: The bottom photo shows the Brooder House in mid October 2008. That little house is just waiting for adventures ahead.)

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