Meet Sparkles! (Blue Cream Light Brown Hen)

Sparkles is one of last year’s hatch of twelve chicks.  For some reason the eggs had an extremely low hatch rate last year, and a very high hatch rate this year.  She was hatched in an incubator, and raised in a brooder with four other incubator-hatched chicks.  Out of that hatch, there were two cockerels and three pullets.

She was the only Blue Cream Light Brown to hatch (out of that group), and she’s one of the sweetest chickens ever.  All the chicks grew up to be show-quality and extremely beautiful.  Sparkles is going to be shown this year, and her mother, Duchess, was 3rd out of 32 birds overall (large fowl and bantam), and best Single Comb Clean Legged bantam.  Her father, Tick-Tock, received a blue danish at both shows he attended.  Her brother, Bluesy, is a beautiful Blue Cream cockerel (hatched out of a different batch of eggs, and now at his new home).

Sparkles has tried to hatch eggs twice this year, and 100% of the Dutch hens have gone broody.  This breed seems to be very good at sitting on eggs and raising chicks.

Sparkles a few days ago (it’s hard to get a photo of her because she runs around so fast).


The incubator she hatched out of ^


Over the next few days, meet the rest of last year’s hatch!


For more Dutch Bantam posts and pictures, click the “Dutch Bantams” link under “Categories” in the sidebar!



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Favorite Chickens

My favorite kind of chicken is a Dutch Bantam.  They’re so tiny.  After owning and showing chickens for a long time, I wanted to find something really show-quality.  But who knew that Dutch Bantams were so rare and hard to find?

Apparently most of them have some other breed crossed in, like Old English Game Bantams or Bantam Leghorns.  This improves the birds’ color, but they’re no longer show-type.  Dutch Bantams are small, weighing only 18 to 21 ounces, and are supposed to be flighty but tamable.  The next challenge is finding birds in a standard color. Most of them seem to be non-APA-approved colors, like millie fleur or buff.

Old English Game Bantams are beautiful, look a lot like Dutch, and are less rare.  Mine is the sweetest little bird ever.  But there’s one problem: The roosters’ combs need to be cut off for show–not something I’m willing to do.  I don’t know if there is a such thing as a pure Dutch Bantam in America.  But if there is, I’m going to try to find it.

What to Do If Your Chicken Dissapears


Panther, the missing chicken.


Last night, a chicken named Panther didn’t come back to the coop.  Maybe she was scared of the neighbors’ fireworks, which were being set off right next to the coop.  Or else she got eaten by an owl.  We searched all over and couldn’t find her–there are a lot of places that chickens can hide in.   All the others were in the coop asleep.  It was dark outside, so it was hard to look for her. Eventually, after a lot of worrying, we locked the coop and decided that Panther had either been eaten by a predator or was hiding somewhere.


Panther didn’t come back to the coop.


To read the rest of this post, visit my chicken website: http://www.bigthingscoop.com/2015/07/04/what-to-do-if-your-pet-chicken-dissapears/


2015 Chicks

After forgetting about this blog for 2.5 years, I have decided to start writing on it again.  This year’s chicks are Puffin, Spicy, Della, Fluffy Tail, Griffin, Icy, and Ivy.  The first batch of five chicks we raised in a brooder.  The last two, Puffy and Spicy, are being raised by a hen.


To see more chicken photos, please visit: http://www.bigthingscoop.com/


 

Puffy and Spicy with Black Beak.

Left to right: Della, Griffin, Icy, and Ivy.  Fluffy Tail is not in the picture.

Owl and Dragon- Two Tiny Hens

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Owl and Dragon, two chicks from this year.  Owl is a Welsummer and Dragon is an Orloff.

Dragon (despite the name) is very cuddly and naturally tame.  Owl is a little more energetic but is sweet, too.  The hen didn’t want them (see below) and because of her nasty pecking, they are now  under the brooder light.  Owl enjoys sleeping under Dragon and they are very attached; they call loudly when one is taken away from the other.

When the “big hens” see the chicks, they make “disapproving wing” at them – have you ever seen when hens see something they don’t like and drag one wing while informing the subject of their disapproval who’s in charge?  When the chicks see the hens, they run for cover- who wouldn’t be terrified after being pecked by a big, crabby broody hen?  The hen, however, continues to be very devoted to her eggs, sitting on them and clucking softly to them all day long.

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