This past Sunday, Sally and I became grandparents – in a manner of speaking. Our favorite hen, Chicken Little, hatched the first of what we were hoping would be a whole litter of baby chickens. We started out with five fertilized eggs that we picked up from our friends at Yonder Way Farms in Fayeteville, Texas. However, one precious little chick is all we got.
And that is just fine with us. We really don’t need a lot of chickens at our house. Our coop is not set up for more than six to eight birds. In fact, this is why we waited so long to let one of our hens sit. We didn’t want a crowded coop.
Sally and I decided to let Chicken Little sit for a couple of reasons. First, she is the hen at the bottom of the pecking order. It is hard for us to watch the constant pecking and pushing around that she is forced to endure. We read on a blog that a batch of chicks had a way of bringing out the mother in all of the hens. So, we are hoping that this little chick will make the other girls treat Chicken Little a whole lot better. At the very least we are hoping it will prevent, or at least delay, the bad treatment that Chicken Little is forced to endure.
While Sally and I think Chicken Little is the sweetest, bestest hen of the bunch, she does have one little problem – she gets broody – A LOT. In the past few months she has become broody four different times. Each time this happened we were forced to quarantine her in a metal cage for a few days. During that time she didn’t eat or drink much. Plus it was just hard for us to watch. So, since she is such a good girl –and she REALLY wanted to sit – we decided to let her.
While we had hoped for a few more chicks, we are absolutely thrilled with our one little baby. She truly is precious and Chicken Little is proving to be a great little mother. Plus, the other hens really do seem to be impressed (and they are treating her a little better). They keep coming up and looking at the baby. When they get too close Chicken Little blows up her feathers and clucks and they politely walk off. I truly hope that that this new baby raises her mom’s standing in the flock!