The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Through the eyes of a chick

Black australorp chick

"We're not babies anymore, you know," the chicks complained Friday.  "Don't you think it's about time you let us leave our room?"

Chick perched on trellis

"Okay, okay," I conceded, peeling back the wall of cardboard I'd used to separate the chicks from the rest of the coop.  Within seconds, intrepid youngsters had figured out how to jump through the holes in the trellis gate and were exploring their new domain.  Chaos ensued as the chicks took dust baths, scratched up worms, snagged gnats in mid-air, and even poked their beaks out the pophole into the pasture.  (The wide world was a bit too scary, though, so they scampered back inside.)

Golden comet

"What's all this ruckus about?" asked the young golden comet.

Chick and hen

A flurry of wings and cheeps later, every chick had darted back behind the gate.  "Nothing to see here, I guess," said the hen, turning to go back outside. 

"But, wait!  What's that little fuzzball?"

Hen at gate

"Hello?  Hello?  Is somebody over there?"


"Maybe we're not old enough to play with the big kids yet after all," the chicks declared, settling down for a rest.

"You know best," I answered, rolling my eyes.  "Just remember, the brooder belongs to a new batch of chicks in a week and a half."

Three week old chicks

Nobody answered.  I guess two and a half week old chicks still need naptime.

Our chicken waterer keeps our chicks happy and healthy.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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How cute! I subscribe to your blog via Google Reader, so I'm constantly able to read your updates. I have to say that your posts about the chicks have been a favorite of mine lately. I guess I'm just a sucker for baby animals!

Anyway, this was a great post to wake up to this lovely Saturday morning. Thanks!

Comment by Chloe Sat May 7 09:32:27 2011
Thanks for saying that! Sometimes I'm hesitant to post non-informative posts that are just cute, so I'm glad to hear they're read and enjoyed. :-)
Comment by anna Sat May 7 10:52:12 2011

Anna, when are you going to write some children's books? I've been after you for years to write nature/animal stories for children. Most children now days do not know anything about farm animals or even much about nature. Go for it!!! The way you wrote about these chicks is wonderful.


Comment by Sheila Sat May 7 20:50:05 2011
I'm glad you enjoyed it, but I have to admit that I tend to lose interest in children's stories pretty fast. Clearly, you and my mom should team up and write your own --- I think you're both more keen on them than I am. :-)
Comment by anna Sun May 8 11:06:53 2011
Hah! I love the narration w/photos. I'm surprised those are 2 & 1/2 weeks, they look the same size as ours which are one week younger. Are they cuckoo marans?
Comment by Eliza @ Appalachian Feet Wed May 11 09:10:45 2011

Nope, these are black australorps. They do seem to be smaller than the hybrid golden comet/rhode island red that is about three days older, but what they lack in size, they make up for in vigor. They've been out foraging in the pasture every day this week!

That said, if you're raising broilers, they would be much bigger than this. I was reading one person's blog with photos of laying hen vs. broiler chicks at this age, and the broilers were twice as big!

Comment by anna Wed May 11 10:52:27 2011

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