Didn't get a chance to photograph the 5 wee chicks crackin' their eggs. We woke on Friday 9 November to find they had already arrived and were cheeping gently from under their mother. One chick failed to make it out of the egg, and had broken through and then died. I wonder if they smother, it wouldn't be hard considering mum is sitting on your head.
They're hard to photograph as mum is very protective and we have them under lots of netting to try dissuade hawks from a 'cheep' breakfast. Caleb managed one quick hold before school and has to resign himself to looking from a far.
We've been wondering what happened with the colouring in the chooks. Though Mum is black, she actually has only ever been a surrogate mother. She didn't lay any of the eggs she sat on, I deliberately gave her Isa Brown and New Hampshire chook eggs (both of whom are orange), and the father, Gus, is a pale fellow. Yet 2 of the chicks are black or dark grey. There have been local theories that some breeds you can sex by colour at birth, in which case we will need to watch closely to see if this occurs. I've also heard that you can tell at the egg stage, a pointy egg (phallic?) is male and a rounded egg, is female. Sounds dubious to me and considering the person who told me this also believes that snakes bite the end of their tails and roll down hills like a wheel ... hmmm, but, from curiosity will give the theory a whirl next time round.
Anyone know the best way to sex an egg or a chick?