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picture of the week

I slept with a chick last night…

So our new chickens have laid eggs, sat on eggs, and hatched some of their eggs! It’s a wonderful thing to see new life. Sadly, 3 eggs were left in the nest unhatched, and of course, my curious Makena begged me to crack them open.

So we did. I whacked the first egg on the counter, and found, not to my surprise, a baby chick inside. What DID surprise me was that it started cheeping! Quite loudly!

I gently pulled away the shell (knowing you should never do this to an unready egg, but again, the mother wasn’t sitting any more, so this egg was ‘dog food.’). The limp, cold, yellow newborn chick fell onto my hand with a little bit of blood.

I noticed the yolk sack was completely consumed inside the chick’s body, so there was hope!

Cheep.

Cheep.

IMG_0021Despite the blood, I pressed the cold, wet chick against my belly. I kept it there for hours. I built a fire, warmed my hands, and held them against its body to warm it up.

The cheeps got louder, and the chick began squirming. Its downy feathers dried into a cute ball of fluff.

When night time came, I realized I had no idea WHERE to put this little chick. I don’t have a heat lamp so I tried sleeping with the chick on my belly. It kept quiet if it was pressed under my shirt, but any time I needed to nurse Eowyn, it made a great fuss about being out from the warmth of my skin.

And every time I would fall asleep, the chick would start slipping off and would squirm and claw my tummy. It felt like a mouse crawling on my belly waking me up in a start!

Finally, around midnight, I decided I needed some rest so I went outside and put the chick under its momma. She tucked it in just fine under her wings, and now it seems to be ok. It's not as strong as its siblings, but it is also 3 days younger. It can walk and get under her when needed.

I’m hoping this little one pulls through! If not, well at least it had a few days of living.

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