Thursday, June 11, 2009

Poults and Chicks 2009

This year we thought we would expand our learning experience and take on Turkeys. We ordered them from Blue Seal in Bangor, ME at the same time we bought Bella, Edward, and Sophie (the goats). We wanted to keep them in the coop with the other chickens since we opened up an additional stall in the barn for this winter. We had our two 6x6x2 brooders we built last spring. We got everything cleaned out, the water containers bleached, the heat lamps cleaned and checked for working bulbs. Put clean shavings in the brooders and waited with baited breath for our new additions. Finally, the call came that we could come in and pick up our 2 hens and 6 toms. All together now, awwwwww..... how cute. They came in a cake box with holes for air vents. We put the box in the brooder under the heat lamps so the poults wouldn't get chilled,

then opened the box carefully not to startle the little ones. They may not look like it now, but they are Broad Breasted Bronze turkeys. The will have a metallic sheen of the feathers which change from copper to bronze to burnished gold. They sound pretty impressive.

Imagine him being the Lord of the Barnyard?

How about these guys?
We had ordered our yearly Jumbo Cornish X Rocks from Murray McMurray Hatchery and the call came from the post office in Bradford to "come pick up your chicks" on Monday morning at 7am. I popped up and got ready, ok, I groaned, rolled over, pulled the covers up and thought, crap I have to get up. You see our animals are on our schedule on this farm. We generally get up and going by about 8am. We work nights and don't get home till 8am in the morning, so when we are home we try to keep the animals on that same schedule. I am truly impressed with the folks that are up by 6am. I just can't switch over to early mornings when I'm off. Hey, it would really confuse the animals! Yeah, that's it. Sounds good to me. Back on the subject, I did get up, put coffee on and head off the the Post Office and get the chicks. Boy were they noisy.

We always order Gro-Gel with the chicks. It reminds me of gut load for crickets. It has vitamins, minerals and absorbs water for the chicks to eat. It sounds good. It may be a rip off but the chicks seems to love it each time.

Izzy was interested in the small box of treats.

Again, we went through the same motions getting the chicks set.

A little dip of the beak in water.

Then they all get to sit on the feeder and eat gro-gel till their little gizzards are full.

What cute little faces.

This was our extra surprise chick. It has the sweetest eye liner on. Any ideas on what kind of chick this is?

So far we have lost 1 turkey and 2 of the chicks. They are staying warm and eating well. We have frames with chicken wire to keep any visitors out. That is chick week on Mainely Ewes Farm. Much love and prayers to all.
Kelly

2 comments:

ga.farmwoman said...

The turkeys and chicks all look cute.
It seems like no matter what care you take there will be a loss of a few.
Your surprise chick looks a lot like a Old English Game chick. Our B.B red bantam chicks were striped like him.

Good luck with them all.
Have a great weekend.
Pam

Oh, and on the guineas eating slugs, I am not sure. I haven't seen any here. (maybe the guineas ate them all?) Lol..but really the guineas are such a help in our garden with bugs of all sort.They do have a liking to tomatoes though. One peck per tomato in most of the tim. Ugh!

John Gray jgsheffield@hotmail.com said...

I love turkeys.....mind you I only have two!!!
arn't they hard to rear???

and you are welcome to have my broodies....you can't move in my field for growling bad tempered sitting hens.....!!!

ps you have a beautiful farm