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Posts Tagged ‘Chantecler’

Yesterday I drove to Carrying Place, Prince Edward County, Ontario to pick up my baby chicks. Carrying Place (named for a canoe portage) is just south of Trenton, and so the drive was about 3 hours each way. Since the hatchery was busy putting together shipments all day, Jason (the owner/manager/chicken breeder) asked me to come by at 7pm. So I got home at 11pm last night, with a box full of peeping baby chicks. 

Since I had prepared (mostly) their new home in advance, it didn’t take too long to settle them into their new (temporary) home, a large cardboard box:

chicks1

They are all healthy and eating and drinking well – as far as I can tell. I peer into the box and see some chicks eating and drinking, but since they’re all pretty much identical, I have to hope that this means they’re all well. I will be checking them several times a day, and making sure that none of them are sitting in a corner looking miserable. Keeping the temperature up in the 30°C – 35°C range that it’s meant to be in for the chick’s first week is proving to be a challenge. When I tested my set-up last Friday the heat lamp was doing a great job, but it now occurs to me that I did the test on a warm afternoon. The heat lamp was struggling to keep the temperature up in the (insulated) garage when it went down to 6°C overnight last night, but the chicks all seem to be doing fine.

They were hatched on Friday, May 1st, so they were three days old when I picked them up, and when these pictures were taken. Yes, they are incredibly cute.

chicks2b

Here is an information page with some good pictures of what the chickens should look like when they’re all grown up. My chicks are the “partridge” coloration, which is a variant of the Chantecler that was developed in Alberta in the 1930s. I chose that variant because I’m hoping to let the chickens free range when they are big enough, and the partridge coloration seems like it would provide the best camouflage.

Jason at the hatchery thoroughly approved of these as a starter flock for a new homesteader. He said the demand for the old-fashioned, dual purpose (eggs and meat), homesteader-friendly heritage breeds was huge this year. He’s sold out of almost everything. 

I feel like we’re “real” homesteaders now. We have Livestock!

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