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Ginger Ginger was the much beloved pet of Bec, Tony and Malcolm.  She was head chook at her place, LOVED meal worms (… right to the end), and lay lovely green eggs that would have made Dr Seuss proud indeed (especially with her beautiful red feathers and those incredible whiskers!)Ginger, 6 days old

Ginger was the cutest of chicks, looking like a ginger puff ball.  She and Fatso were hatched from the brown eggs of my commercial brown and black layers who were living with my two Araucana roosters.  Ginger was from my very first set of hatchlings, and when Bec came to buy some Araucana chicks she was so taken with Ginger that it was only right that she go home with her.family

I always knew Ginger was a cutie, but didn’t realise she’d grow out to be such a handsome girl!  You can tell from her picture that she was ALL personality.

I am sure she very much missed about the coop… except by whatever chook has taken over as head girl now :-).

Ginger, 4wks old

I also know she led the most privileged of lives that a chicken could possibly have…

Thank you Bec for giving Ginger such a good life, and don’t be too sad. xo

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chicks no more

araucana eggs

First eggs

They are chicks no more…  In their case we know what came first; it was the egg, not the chickens who now stand before you.  As a proud mum-mum, I am very pleased to tell you these girls have hit their egg-laying status in the flock and are laying some lovely blue-green eggs of their own.  Despite a very mild winter, the girls engaged in an extended period of free-loading and started laying after 7 looooooong months.  Of all the chicks hatched last season, there are only seven new egg layers in total. Thankfully most are laying blue eggs, but there are one of two olive green eggs in each daily clutch.

Fatso lays the greenest egg of them all, but she’s got so much personality that I can’t bear to part with her.  She is still the fastest chook of the bunch, and has a quick eye for tasty morsels – especially bugs.

Of Hatch Three, only one chicken has lived a full life. These chicks must have been inspired by Houdini as they were forever finding a way out of the coop.  “The Houdini’s” one by one disappeared, until there was only one (pictured above – standing in the middle).

Fffi’s bubba, Casper, also came to a tragic end when the coop flooded during one of Qld’s unseasonal and freakish storms…. and Mr Fox got Splinty just before he was old enough to crow his very first crow.  This made me very sad. As Splinty was so proud of telling you, he was most definitely my favorite, and he was growing into one handsome man.  His brothers, two black araucana’s, grew out into lovely boys and found good homes locally.  They now have their own flocks of girls to fuss over.

freerangingOf course the girls just love free-ranging.  They don’t get out as often as they used to because Mr Fox seemed to think that every few weeks he deserved a nice tasty meal of chicken.  He hasn’t had success for many months now, and the girls enjoy their roam whenever they get the chance.  Their only other problem is Rufus.  Even on a chain he’s learning how to stalk them – lucky they are just as fast on their feet as he is.

And it’s all about to begin again!  The incubator is running and has at least 5 little chicks growing inside the eggs.  18 September is the predicted hatch day…. can’t wait.

splinty-15wks

Hey there!  Me Splinty again.  Mum-mum finds it hard to photograph me now I’m all grown up, so I haven’t featured lately in this ol’ blog… BUT I’m still here getting around the yard as fast as a road runner.  That’s wot mum-mum thinks we young cockerels look like – roadrunners!  Hmmpph!  She’s not sure if a few of my hatchlings are also girls or boys, she’s thinking there’s at least one more roostie amongst us.  

Did you see my lovely sickle feathers coming in on my saddle?  And my crest is growing in nicely too… Yep, I’m going to be another pretty boy in this yard.  Might have to challenge Roostie or Pedro to a dual soon – not sure about Roostie’s spurs though… am keeping clear of them for now. Maybe a crow off first might be the way to go.  Not that I’m crowing just yet… saving that up for now.  Don’t worry – am sure you’ll here about ihere first!

As I’m mum-mum’s favorite she’s not going to give me away though… well, that’s what I’m hearing anyway – she’s going to get dad-dad to build me my own cage and run!  Cool hey?  And ’cause dad-day loves me too, he’s going to build it. He hee!! Lucky Splinty.

Tracking the development of a splash-coloured araucana chick.

Splinty, day old chick

Splinty, day old chick

splinted-chick

Splinty with his fabled splint

Testing out the new wing feathers, one week old

Testing out the new wing feathers, one week old

Splinty, two weeks old

Splinty, 2 weeks old

Splinty, 3 weeks old

Splinty, 3 weeks old

Splinty hanging out on Dad-dad's desk

Splinty hanging out on Dad-dad's desk

splinty-4wks

Free-ranging at 4 weeks

Splinty at 5 weeks

Splinty at 5 weeks

Splinty, 7 weeks old

Splinty, 7 weeks old

Splinty, 10 weeks old

Splinty, 10 weeks old

Splinty, 15 weeks

Splinty, 15 weeks

Splinty, 19 weeks old

Splinty, 19 weeks old

Beautiful Splinty, 21 weeks old

Beautiful Splinty, 21 weeks old

brooder renos Update on hatchlings from settings two and three. Mum-mum cleaned out our brooder today, and removed the partition so we have more room.  It’s great – we love it this way.  She also fitted some perches for us to play on.  Dad thinks his design is pretty good, but we’re all still waiting for him to finish our teenage quarters…. The big chicks are out in the big girls run now.  They’re roosting like grown up girls, and I hear that mum-mum has put egg-mum Issy and Missy in with them now!  They needed a break from the roosters…

7-weeks-old

7-weeks-old

Egg-mum Fifi has gone broody.  She’s really determined to stick with it too.  Mum-mum has tried to disrupt her efforts by taking her off the nest at night but she keeps going back.  Of the three eggs under her, mum-mum thinks one might be growing.  I wonder if she’ll be a good mum??

broody hen

The big chicks thought they’d perch on mum-mum this afternoon… poor mum-mum!

chicken-antics

;-araucana chick, 2 wks old

Gidday, I’m one of mum-mum’s “hatch-three” chickies.  She thinks I’m pretty cute.  Well, I am…  I guess 🙂

Mum-mum been a bit distracted the last few weeks and ignoring us.  We squark when she picks us up, and she can’t believe the fuss we make.  She’s been feeding us chick starter mash, and today… she discovered that our crops are full as a goog – I don’t believe she thought they could get so full!  He-hee.  Well, they can!

Me and my chicky-siblings are all pretty much the same colour.  Some of us have some yellow around our necks, but not much – mum-mum is very curious about what colours we’ll end up (see http://forum.backyardpoultry.com/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=7969908).

She’s also hoping we’re girls too, because she’s got no idea what sex the last lot was and is concerned that six of the remaining eight might ALL be roosters!  LOL – time will tell.

5-weeks-old

Well, mum-mum had to give up on Dad and all his plans to build us our teenage chicken tractor.  We were getting too squashed up in the ol’ brooder box now we’re five weeks old, so mum-mum has put us into the “big girls” pen and put all the big girls and roosters together for awhile.  In the mean-time, I’ve heard Dad-dad ban mum-mum from any more “incubating” until he can catch up with the building.  She has eight (!) other chicks I’ve heard dad say.  Gee… she’s replaced us already!  First she starts selling us off, and now she’s hatchin’ others.

We’ve been in this new home for two sleeps now.  We have been very confused at night about where to sleep and mum-mum has had to come and settle us all down in the brooder box that dad had just cleaned out for the new chicks.  Well…  they CAN’T have IT yet….  ’cause  we still need it!  But, anyway… today we all might have figured out what mum-mum has been trying to tell us for two nights now… we can roost like proper grown up chook-chooks :-).  We tried it out today and mum-mum was very impressed with us.  We even figured out what this ramp is for, but it’s actually pretty easy for us to fly up there all by ourselves.

Oh!  And yesterday… completely forgot to tell you!  Guess wot??  Mum-mum sold more of us off again!  She sold Ginger and one of the blue chicks (mum-mum’s pretty sure they aren’t bros after all)…. but their new mum-mum seemed actually quite nice.  Mum-mum even introduced me to her and ‘Superbec’ said she’d look after Ginger for me so I guess that is ok.  Plenty of chicks around here for me anyway…

And ALL of this actually proves me right again. I, Splinty, am of course still mum-mum’s favouite (even though those who are betting that I’m a rooster are looking more and more spot on the money by every passing day).  Poor old mum-mum… bet she’s wondering how she can keep another rooster around here!!

Rufus, 9 weeks old

Hi!!  I’m Rufus.  I’m the latest and defiitely the most handsome additon to the family round here.  I am an Irish Terrier, and cute as a button according to mum.  I’m only 9 weeks old, but I’ve got mum running around after me already.  She won’t let me bark at those squarking things that smell like a very nice snack, so I’m humouring her for now.  She’s feeding me pretty well as it is, so I guess I can leave them alone.  There is this large fluffy white thing that stalks around every now and then too… I have no idea WHAT it is.  It’s not like me that’s for sure.  They seem pretty attached to it too… hmmm, no fun.

hatchings, third setting

The day I came home mum-mum hatched some more chicks too…  I can hear them chirping but I can’t find them…  they must be here somewhere.

2009-01-28-001
2009-01-28-002
2009-01-28-003

new-bubbas

From eight blue eggs, three of us were hatched, each a different colour.  Mum-mum says we are so quiet and cute and that it’s hard to believe that in four short weeks, us “lil’ balls of fluff” will be  transformed into rampaging baby birds demanding something she describes as ‘mealie worms’.  The worm things sound interesting, but I have no idea what she means by those baby birds…

We have slept most of the day in our mum-build temporary brooder (dad-dad’s slipping…).   Mum-mum has shown some restraint and left us alone.  It’s very scary when she picks us up.  And then there’s that flashing thing she’s addicted to waving at us.  What is THAT all about??

day-old-ara-31

About us

We are a bunch of araucana chicks growing up in Brisbane, Australia. We have a dedicated human family:- There's mum-mum and dad-dad, a cat named Sasha, and most recently a puppy they call Rufus... as well as an extended family of other chooks. Mum-mum has hand reared us in a broody palace that dad built us, but eventually as we get bigger... we make our way into the big outside world.

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