Introducing the new generation of ‘fluffballs’! :D
I came home from house-sitting to find these gorgeous little things had hatched in my absence.
The tally is 5x Polish (as judged by the big pompoms on top of their heads) and 1x Jap (the only one that looks like a ‘normal’ day-old chick – the one of the right in the below pic). One egg is still unhatched, and one seems to have disappeared … mysteries … Anyway, the 6 we have look healthy and are busy exploring the chic feed and water dish, under the careful eye of their surrogate mumma hen.
You might notice that its a different ‘mum’? Honey, for whatever reason, seemed to loose interested part way along, and quite conveniently, her sister, Atilla, was being stubbornly clucky, so we swapped them over.
Atilla was thrilled to have her very own little eggs to sit on (she missed out last year and ended up ‘stealing’ some of Honey’s chicks to rear), and it seems to have had the added bonus of mellowing out Atilla’s tendency to be a bit bossy/aggressive (hence the name: Atilla the Hen) and she’s even letting us pick her and them up!
So the next task will be thinking of four or five ‘B’ names.
Statistically, about half will be boys, so they won’t get names: they’ll either find different homes, and their new owners will name them, or they’ll end up in the pot … Anyway, fingers crossed that we have more girls! Therefore we’ll need more possible girl names, starting with ‘B’, because they’re Atilla’s first hatch. Any thoughts?
Update 22/12/15: we lost one of the polish. It had been a bit weak yesterday, not wandering around with the others, face-planting and not being able to right itself .. even feeding it with an eyedropper didn’t see any improvement and it eventually succumbed in my hand this afternoon. RIP little fluffball. I’m sorry you didn’t get much of a chance at life.
Update 25/12/15: we lost another one of the polish.
We had found it half drowned in the water dish yesterday. It was still alive but very wet and very cold. After emergency heating and rubs it seemed to perk up again so we put it back under ‘mum’ for the night. Unfortunately, it didn’t make it. But it had fought well: it had already been wet once (having been kicked into a puddle by ‘mum’), buried (after ‘mum’ demonstrated scratching a bit too vigorously) and stood on countless times by ‘mum’ and its siblings (it was clearly the runt). Poor little thing. He/She was a fighter.