Two months ago, we got a call saying “Hi, this is Asagi Hatchery, your chicks are ready!” Um…Huh? Our what? How many?!?
Apparently we ordered a dozen browns – a hybrid of the White Leghorns (excellent layers) and Rhode Island Reds (good temperament). When we went to pick them up, the ladies at Asagi threw in two extra for good measure. So, our long-term goal of raising chickens to condition our soil, provide fertilizer, pest control, and fresh farm raised eggs became a fast reality – all fourteen of them.
First things first. We needed a brooder to keep the chicks warm for the first month.
Building the brooder box
Lucky thing we have a few tools and a skilled woodworker!
Next was a warm light, chick starter mash and a feeder (we bought vegetarian natural feed), a waterer (chicks always need fresh water available), and some bedding. We read that chicks need a little bit of texture for their feet, and so the paper towels.
Two days old Two weeks old
- Pretty soon they needed a bigger home. Lucky thing we had the perfect purple pidgeon cage ready.
At one month
Now it’s time for the next move. We’d better get moving.
- teenagers at two months
According to Ka`uiki, their only fault is that they don’t know how to follow their kumu (her, of course).
Unfortunately our moa wahine met up with a mongoose that wiped out most of our population. We were devastated to find their cage empty except for their carcasses. We’ll spare you the details. Needless to say, mongoose is not on our list of favorite alien species. After doing a number on the `alae `ula, our chickens were pretty much sitting ducks. Two survived the carnage and we’re hopeful they aren’t too stressed to lay. We also were fortunate to pick up ten two-week old chicks from our friends at Asagi Hatchery. So we’re back in the brooder for another week or so. Meanwhile we’re building a reinforced heavy duty chicken tractor. Post to follow soon!