Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Babies updates and coming attractions

These weeks get crazier all the time.  I can't believe we are past the half way point of April already.  I still don't have a garden planted, which for me is unreal but its a new garden bed and its been really wet.  I'm making a lot of excuses huh?

The chicks are growing wing feathers and tail feathers.  One of the turkens appears to be growing the beginnings of his comb.  I've managed to ID all the hens that we are keeping, but I still have no idea which chick was the "free exotic" or what its gender is.  The hatchery sent an extra 5 babies beyond what we ordered and I know one of them was labeled as a female Blue Andulusian (they must have had an odd extra I guess)- whom I've already identified but the other four I can only guess were extra roosters on my "all heavies" portion of my order.  So I have 5 (the 4 unknowns plus the exotic unknown) that I assume will go to freezer camp at the end of the summer.

The turkey poults are growing pretty fast too.  They are about 10 days old by my guess and are starting to fill in with wing feathers and I think they've gotten taller.  I'm somewhat sure that the white ones are actually Giant White Turkeys since they are bigger than the Broad Breasted Bronze one (it could be a standard bronze one, impossible to tell really).  

The ducklings are getting huge!  The Pekin ducks are nearly the size of the goslings at this point.  They are kind of funny in that they sit around the water dishes and play in the water.  They usually muddy it up really well too and I think they are dunking their food in it.   The smallest of the alleged Pekin ducklings has a gash on its bill that I'm a little concerned about.  I can't imagine how it got that way so I guess since its otherwise pretty active and lively I'll leave it be.   The black and gray ducklings, I think are Swedish but I'm not completely sure; they aren't growing as fast but I don't think they get as large either as adults.

The gosling pair are real characters.  They like to "talk" to us every time we look into their brooder box.  They are also brave enough to put the poults in line (the poults pick on everyone by pecking at them, I assume this a turkey thing).

So next week, I'll add to my updates news of goats hopefully.  I'm supposed to pick up a Nubian milk doe and a saanen wether to get us started.  I've already bought salt blocks, bedding, a milk kit and a first aid kit in preparation for the new arrivals.  I already had cheese making supplies so I'll be looking forward to getting a chance to really try them out on some fresh milk!

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