Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Babies - they grow up so fast!

Our chicks are six days old today (except for Teeny, who's 5 days old), and boy, are they changing fast. No longer tiny, waddling balls of fluff, they now have various stages of flight feathers growing in, and most this morning have the first wisps of their tail feathers growing, too.

Five of the black and yellow babies have feathered in with a yellow primary flight feather (the first one, closest to the bottom of the wing). Several other black ones are growing strictly black feathers. One has red secondary feathers, which is really interesting. The yellow chicks all have yellow feathers, but one of the older ones flapped it's little infant wings a few minutes ago and I saw black spots on some of the feathers (coordinates with the rest of its black-spotted outfit). I know three Easter Egger eggs hatched and I can pick out two of the chicks by their fluffy little cheek feathers (the parent breeds of the Easter Egger hybrids have muffs, or cheek feathers, that curl slightly upward like unruly mid-19th century male beards). I'm still trying to find number 3.

Everyone is eating and drinking (and napping) well. When I open the top of the brooder they scatter - strong fight or flight instincts to be sure. I can feel the strength in the legs and backs of the older ones, and even little Teeny runs now with everyone else. This morning, though, they're also sort of hop-flying. Wow.

I'll post a few new photos later today when the light is better. I have to capture these moments. It's like driving through a tiny town...blink and you missed it!


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