Saturday, February 19, 2011
Holiday Chicken Sickness And Another Batch of Baby Chicks
But it seems her 'crop failure' has returned, again on a holiday weekend. Perhaps she's allergic to holidays. More likely she ingested something rancid during the moving of the compost, or her crop is weakened from her new year's weekend incident and now is more susceptible to becoming easily bound. We do have quite a lot of high grass that could also be the cause. Whatever the case, we hope she makes a quick and full recovery. These episodes have fostered much more knowledge about a chicken's anatomy whereas prior to the advent of the year 2011 I thought a crop was something that sprung verdantly en masse from the earth or a little stick to goad on a horse. Add one more definition: The storage pouch for food on a chicken before it enters the stomach. Interestingly enough the crop evolved in chickens and other birds that are easy prey to other animals so that they can quickly forage in open spaces and fill it up then get to safety then digest it's food later (this according to the University of Kentucky Agricultural Extension).
Meanwhile more chicken antics ensue. Yesterday we got our second batch of little poults. Now our miniature flock is 8 and consists of: 2 Giant White Cochins, 2 Buff Orpingtons, 2 Delawares, and 2 Bantam Silkies (one white, one black). It's chaos in that little tub right now. The 4 chicks we adopted last weekend are behemoths compared to the newbies. They've sprouted tail and wing feathers and tramp all over the littler ones. The teeny black silkie elicits "oohs" and "aahs" from every visitor. We've been on pasty vent cleaning duty relatively often since we've gotten them. The stress of being cargoed half way across the nation probably is to blame. In fact our cochins are two of only a handful that lived through the shipping experience, the rest succumbing to asphyxiation. The person at the poultry farm neglected to cut air vents in the box, a deadly mistake. I pity Tom from A&L Feed who had the distinct displeasure of opening that package at the Post Office. We're still hoping to get some Americaunas and Marans to round out the egg color.