A retro-post by Pat the Chooks
Saturday, 29th April 2006
Down to release the chooks from their overnight captivity this morning and to check on Columbine, the broody black chook. Opened the coop to have a wee look at her and found her, as ever, firmly settled down on her clutch of assorted eggs through the ages. Just as I was about to close up, I heard a cheeping sound and realised that at least one of the eggs must have been successfully incubated and hatched. Leaving the coop at a gallop, I charged up to the house and called Her Maj to come down and see the new arrival. She wellied on her boots and we lifted Columbine to see what we had – a single new chick which must have been about twelve hours old or so.
Now, the tricky bits. The coop is no place for her to raise a clutch (or even a singleton chick) and Columbine has some other eggs under her. We are off to town mid-morning to pick up a couple of ladies from the singers for our trip to Fort Bill and have no time to sort anything else out and will be back in the wee smalls; alternative accommodation will have to wait until Sunday morning, assuming the new arrival is robust enough to make it through the day.
We did go round and consult with the oracle next door, who gave some good advice which we shall follow. The problem is that the suitable coop we could set aside for the new family is in the goose pen and, with Gertie about to hatch her egg (with luck), the Sergeant will be acting the bully-boy again and might give the chook and chick(s) a hard time. Thinking caps on.