It is that time of year again. You know, that time when Spring is so close and yet so far. Yesterday’s snowfall of 2-1/2 feet has us feeling “tis the season” …not for Winter Wonderland but for Spring to show herself! Well she’s starting… We’re hatching chicks!
Now I will admit that the chicks have lost a bit of attention to the new baby goats. Most visitors come to see the goats, and for good reason. It’s tons of fun to have a furry little goat crawl all over your lap and nibble on your nose–and if you haven’t gotten that experience, I highly recommend that you come visit before they grow out of their cute stage! But this isn’t a post about baby goats. This is a post about baby chickens.
It is a magical thing to see a baby chick first poke a little hole in its shell, then slowly work a crack around the middle before giving a mighty heave to push the egg apart. There is something special about seeing a newborn creature that is just at its beginning. And, of course, it’s a practical thing. Thanks to our wonderful customers, we have a pretty good chicken business going, and the hatching of the chicks is a big part of that.
We have to keep some of the chicks we hatch to replenish our egg laying hens every year, but we also hatch plenty to sell so that other people can experience the pleasure of backyard farming and sitting down to a breakfast with eggs that were produced by their very own chickens. Some people even buy fertilized eggs from us so that they can hatch the eggs themselves.
For us, the routine is well underway. Every two weeks we collect fertilized eggs and put them in the incubator. It takes them three weeks to develop, and then they hatch. We have already hatched two batches of chicks, and our two incubators are loaded with the next batches. We will keep hatching chicks every two weeks until we call it quits for the year in September. This makes it so that we have chicks for visitors to see and hold all summer, and we also have chicks ready to sell all summer for those wishing to start (or continue) their own chicken venture.