Chickens and Candy Eggs

3-plus week old barred rock hens inside indoor brooder
3-plus week old barred rock hens. I think the one on the right is Minerva or Polly… but suggestions are welcome!

The barred rock chicks have passed the three-week mark.  I write these posts on the far side of each week (which is to say, we are living and writing in the fourth week, having survived the third…).

Week three of chicks, in brief:  more growth, more noise, more feathers.  The chicks still have fuzz on their heads, and underneath their wings, but are otherwise feathered.  They are easily five or six times the size of a day-old chick.

Week three was on the onset of an amazing amount of dust.  A plethora of dust, a profusion of grit, a thin layer on every horizontal surface within 40 feet of the brooder.  Like nothing I had ever seen before. Out came the duster, and then an hour or two later… it would reappear. Chicken dust.  From the wood shavings, from the fuzz or growing feathers, I don’t know.  I write in the past tense: due to dinner guests, the chicks moved today to a brooder setup in our basement with supplemental heat; it is still too cold to move them out to our unheated coop (our coop has no electric access for their heater, and they haven’t grown enough feathers to survive without heat).

3-week plus barred rock rooster
3-week plus barred rock rooster
barred rock chicks in brooder
Curious chicken looks a bit like T-Rex?

We have been reading dinosaur books for bed-time stories, and I can make out some resemblances in some pictures of these chicks to… certain dinosaurs, particularly T-Rex.  I thought I remembered reading somewhere about birds being the closest living animal to dinosaurs, and Google helpfully led me to several articles that about chickens possibly being T-Rex’s closest living relative.

Onto the candy eggs, or in this case plastic eggs filled with candy:

Candy Egg Hunt
Sunday: Candy Egg Hunt in the Back Yard

See the snow in the background?  It’s still hanging around in April.  It’s not even truly mud season yet, because we have only had about four days since January where the weather was above 40F, so the mud is still… frozen.  All the same, the Easter bunny left enough eggs outside to fill a basket.  At the base of trees, right in the boughs of baby balsam fir trees, on top of shed steps…  we managed to collect them all and then, with cheeks and noses red from the cold, go inside to eat some chocolate.

9 thoughts on “Chickens and Candy Eggs

  1. Yeah, that brooder dust is pretty intense. My guest room was blanketed in it. The chicks are looking good though!

    Every time I see my girls chasing after bugs I always see mini dinosaurs. They’re pretty ferocious hunters. It’s like watching Jurassic Park. I just need a mini Jeff Goldblum in the run to tell me I “must go faster”.

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  2. They do take on a prehistoric look at this point, don’t they. Every year when we raise chicks ( a new batch of layers every year or so, but 100 meat birds every summer), people always exclaim” oh how cute” when they first arrive . 3-4 weeks into it, they become eating and pooping machines……..we are then cleaning their brooding area every day, replacing the shavings. No longer fuzzy little bundles, more like an awkward teenage attempting to grow their first facial hair. Always a bit relieved to be able to move them to their outdoor accommodations! Sounds like you are having fun watching the stages of growth!

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    1. You have described it to a “t” and we will be so relieved once we move them to the coop. Actually, I am enjoying having moved them to the basement, more so when hopefully soon coop bound! A brief respite, the mottled java chicks are scheduled to arrive late this week.

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    1. I don’t know, I think the lighter gray is a roo because of the extra barring gene male barred rocks get. Don’t think I will know for sure until they are all a bit older. Not familiar with bony combs, it is hard to tell!

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  3. smfarm

    For being such little creatures, chicks produce an incredible amount of poop and dust, don’t they? Thank goodness mine moved out of the garage about a month ago. They’re all males and are now starting to practice crowing and sound like a kazoo band in the morning.

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    1. Yes yes, after the first week it’s all about the poop, and the dust. No crowing yet, but from not having experienced it firsthand, a kazoo band sounds quite charming! My kind of music (we shall see how I feel about it at dawn when it happens here though…)

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