It's been a long while since I've put up pictures of the little chickens - not quite so little anymore. Puff and Three Spot are 9 weeks old tomorrow, and about 2/3 the size of the big chickens. I put up a post on Backyard Chickens to see if anyone could help me sex them. To my dismay, the majority of the respondents thought they were both roosters! One person said they look a lot like her Black Australorp hens at that age, so I still have some hope.... or maybe it's just denial. They're still cheeping, I guess I'll know they're roos if they start to crow. As they develop, their feathers will help determine their sex as well - the roosters have pointier saddle feathers and bigger tails. They don't have any baby fluff left. They're growing like weeds, and are totally rambunctious.
They're still too little to be integrated with the older chickens, so I built them this little mini-run inside the big run. It's amazing what you can do with a lot of zip ties and some chicken wire! They sleep in the dog crate. It's really nice that they can interact with the older chickens - they've gotten used to each other which will hopefully help make a smooth transition when they do get turned loose with the rest of the hens.
Speaking of the rest of the chickens, they are doing really well! Only two are laying: the Welsummer on the right in this picture, and the red Sussex (second from the right). They're giving about an egg a day each. The blond Sussex should start any day, followed by the Wheaten Maran. The Black Copper Marans are pretty far behind. Hopefully I'll get a few eggs from them before winter. I trimmed some turnip greens from the garden and gave them to the chickens. As you can see, they love them! They're also really fond of carrot tops, tomato scraps, and sweet corn cobs.
Yesterday was an exciting egg day. I got two eggs, the lighter one is from the Sussex. The darker one is from the Welsummer. Usually, she lays small eggs like the Sussex, but yesterday hers was HUGE.
I had a sneaking suspicion it was a double yolker, and I was right. What a beautiful egg! The whites are very perky on these eggs... a sure sign of freshness. Wikipedia tells me that double yolked eggs are a result of an unsynchronized production cycle and are more common in young layers..... interesting.
Happy last day of summer everyone!
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