Archive | July, 2012

Day 21 – To hatch or not to hatch?

28 Jul

Well it is day 21…

Hatching day for Zippy’s chicks.

However,  I look and try to listen for any pipping chicks within the nest, being careful not to disturb Mum to be. Pipping usually occurs on day 19 but we have had a spell of very hot weather and this can sometimes delay the chicks and they can hatch a day later than usual.

Sadly, my hopes for any chicks hatching is becoming more and more of a concern by the  hour. Zippy is still determined and hopeful her babies are going to arrive soon. It is heartbreaking to see. She is so unaware of what is happening or what is not happening.

Day 21 passes and sadly all to soon we arrive at day 24 with no hatched chicks.



Broody Zippy

7 Jul

After weeks of trying to break Zippy’s broodiness, we could see just how determined this little lady was. She started her broodiness in May so I was feeling concerned over her well-being and wanted to try and help her…

She was already housed separately in a large rabbit hutch with a private nesting area and a run section with food and water nearby.  I had put some pot eggs under her for a week or so to see how she would react and like I had thought, she took to them instantly, keeping them warm and safe, a perfect mother in the making.

I didn’t step into this lightly but after I had decided nothing was going to phase her, I decided to buy some fertile hatching eggs from our local hen supplier.

Whilst Zippy was taking a quick eating and drinking break from sitting on the pot eggs, I carefully replaced the 3 pot eggs for the 3 fertile eggs bought earlier in the day. I am not sure if she sensed any difference in the eggs but she snuggled down almost instantly, ruffling her feathers over them and purring with contentment.

There is a definite  look in the eyes of a determined, broody hen…

“How much longer do I have to wait?”