A family farm

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

turkey chicks

We candled all of the 14 turkey eggs we've been collecting and putting in the incubator tonight. Well, we didn't candle the egg we picked up tonight. Chris and I looked at eggs that had been in the incubator for about 10 days and watched a rounded figure inside the shell dance around. We called Kellie out to us to see the dancing chick inside the eggshell. What a sight! When we hatched chicken eggs, I recall seeing something moving inside the egg, but it wasn't near as obvious as the turkey chicks. Even one of the eggs that hadn't been in the incubator for very long and was just a red blob with veins was moving around. Only one of the eggs that you could still see a figure inside seemed to be sleeping. Apparently we woke the rest of them up. The earliest eggs from Jan. 6 (two of them) and the egg from Jan. 8 were nearly impossible to see anything other than a little room at the very tip of the egg and the air pocket.

In other turkey news, Georgie started working on building a nest on the old drain field right next to our house. Yesterday Chris said she was digging in the dirt, but was having a hard time doing it because the ground is nearly frozen. I remarked to Chris today that I was surprised at how big the hole was that Georgie had dug, and he said it wasn't that big yesterday so perhaps she made it bigger today? We walked over, and he said it was bigger. He said we should keep our eye on the hole because she probably will try to lay eggs in it. So far she has not been broody at all, wanting to lay on them. I find that odd behavior. You'd think she'd want to lay on them and keep them warm. After all, we have to keep the incubator temperature at a stead 100 degrees to hatch these chicks. I don't think a frozen egg would hatch. I don't know why her instincts have taken over. Hatching fowl has been interesting. Right from birth chickens start scratching and pecking for food. It really is amazing how this all works. I mean, without a mother to teach them how do they just know how to behave? It really is quite something. It amazes me.

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