April, 2015

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Help! I’m being over run with chicks!

1 day old

Well, not really. :)

When I ran the numbers to estimate the number of chicks I would hatch out this season, I estimated between a 50-60% hatch rate – this was based on what I have gotten in previous years using those styrofoam incubators.

Now that I have a cabinet style GQF, that hatch rate has soared! Even with a storm that moved through last week and knocked power out for a couple of hours, I still hatched out 25 of 27 eggs that went into lockdown!

So, now we add 10 more wheaten/blue wheaten, 5 more white, and 10 more F1 and F2 gen OE/EE!

Wheaten/blue wheaten Ameraucana, white Ameraucana, and F1 and F2 generation OE/EE. Look at those fluffy cheeks!

Look what arrived at the Post Office this morning!

Wheaten/Blue Wheaten and Black Large Fowl
Ameraucana chicks - all the way from Texas!

I am so excited! 10 little wheaten and blue wheaten Ameraucana chicks and 8 beautiful little black Ameraucana chicks. I’ve waited so long for these guys!  Thank you, Paul & Angela Smith :)

Wheaten/Blue Wheaten and Black Large Fowl
Ameraucana chicks – all the way from Texas!

First White Ameraucanas hatching at Sand Castles Farm!

IMG_20150413_080658

I am so excited! I just bought a white trio three weeks ago and, today, the first eggs are hatching. This is exciting!

Feathered Legged Ameraucana

Well, it happens. It isn’t supposed to, but it does.  The wheaten Ameraucanas have a few hidden genetic traits that pop out and surprise you every once in a while and this year’s hatch is no exception.

There are three feathered legged genes in chickens – PT1, PT2, and PT3. The first two are dominant traits, so only one parents needs to have it for the chicks to show it. Those two are what make the feathered legs on most of the more common feathered legged large fowl – brahmas, Cochins, etc.  The third gene, PT3, is not as common and is recessive.  So, both parents have to be carrying it for it to be expressed in any of their chicks. Apparently, in my main breeding pen, my rooster and at least one of my hens are heterozous for feathered legged gene, PT3.

Only one of the three in these pics have the feathered legs and he will be culled. I can’t use him in a breeding program for Ameraucanas, no matter how pretty he is.

The White trio are finally out of quarantine!

JW-JM trio 4-7-15 4

And the first thing they do is roll around in the mud!