Chicks!

We were most excited on Saturday morning when we heard tapping and cheeping from some of our incubating eggs. About lunchtime the first egg cracked.  However after that there was just lots and lots of waiting. We actually hadn’t been expecting any hatching before Sunday, the eggs having not gone into the incubator until late on the Saturday 3 weeks before, but couldn’t help sneaking a look every now and again during the day.

Sunday morning we found two fluffy little chicks waiting to greet us.
We moved them into a brooder box inside, where they have been cheeping merrily at us all day.
They have been watched with interest by everyone who passes by.
Funnily enough neither of the first two chicks were from the egg that cracked on Saturday, and after waiting for ages and watching the beak that was sticking out through the crack we finally decided to help that particular chick out. We figured that 24 hours of pecking and rocking around was enough and so we peeled a bit of the shell off and out came number three.
They are so wet and scraggly at first, but after an hour or so they soon fluff up and look very sweet. The wet chick above and the dry one below are the same chick.
So, so far we have three!  There are no more cheeping at us at the moment. We think these three have hatched first as their mum “Rose”  lays slightly smaller eggs and has some bantam in her which we have read tend to hatch faster. Dad is our Australorp rooster. Hopefully they will all grow big and strong from here, time will tell.  Lydia is very pleased so far, especially since the chicks cheep at her whenever she talks to them.
Now we have to wait and see if any more hatch from the first batch. We put in 13 eggs of which 1 was infertile, and the rest seemed to be developing just fine when we last candled them.  Patience, patience. But it is lovely to have 3 at least.
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