May 28, 2015

I lost a chick.

Well it was bound to happen eventually, I just really hoped it wouldn't be with my first batch.
Chicks coming home last month. (I'll not be morbid and point out the missing one.)
I've been putting the chicks (who are really more like awkward adolescents than babies now) in their old brooder but relocated to the garden shed for the nights lately. There are a number of wild cats, large rodents and dogs in the area that would love to make a snack of the little guys in their tractor and since we don't have any large enough dogs to scare these critters away, safety is indoors.

Yesterday morning before I left for work at 7, when I transferred the chicks from brooder to tractor, I realized that I had a goner on my hands. My little brown chick (who had come to me with paste bum, but had seemed to overcome it as it grew) was very limp and didn't even attempt to stand. I made a makeshift triage of chicken wire and Rubbermaid container and left the poor baby on clean grass in the sunshine and left a note for my mum to check up on it.

Work doesn't wait for sick chickens.

When I had a few minutes between my morning work tasks I did a few google searches and determined that either the paste bum caught up with the chick or (my guess) it had gotten sour crop. I texted a few treatment suggestions to my mum but she responded at about 10:30 that it was gone.

I realize that death is a part of a farm, its nothing I'm afraid of, I just had high hopes that my first batch of chicks (who were all doing very well!) would be spared!

Welcome to the life of a farmer, folks! Sometimes it suck.

But sometimes it doesn't. I did gather 6 eggs yesterday. I do gather on average 5 eggs every day.


That's what a person looking to farm needs to remember. There is a balance on a farm. Sometimes animals die (unexpectedly or planned) sometimes that results in a freezer-full, other times it results in one less future egg per day. Its a balancing act between life and death, ups and downs, surviving and thriving.

The different shapes and sizes of my hen's offerings

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