Thursday, March 11, 2010

New Chicks and..the Wet Season?

I thought I had some more "dry season" left to get stuff tethered and started in the yard but it looks like I was wrong. Unless this is some kind of weather system or something it appears we are settling in to the dry-and -sunny morning and wet- in-the-afternoon pattern. I've got top heavy heliconias falling down the hillside and new, very tall torch gingers pulling up the soft, wet dirt. Anyway, when I was out looking around yesterday I found a white chicken sitting as if she were on eggs. Since Big Boy, the new red gallo has started circling the house there has been a lot of chicken noise - mating torture complete with running and screaming and neck pecking. This first batch of brown guys has been around a week or two.

Today, for the first time I saw 7 little puffs on the driveway. The cats and the chickens love the little grass piles I make when I sweep after mowing: I make the piles and they undo them!

They are very tiny. One got stuck in a sticky weed and couldn't get unstuck so I took care of that. They can't eat big corn or even cracked corn yet but they can eat rice so I brought them a little.
I don't know if Big Boy is the dad or not but he appears to want to be.

I don't think this "display" is for me...I think she is telling him to back off.
Anyway, the house is full of wet cats everywhere and small chicks sitting under mom.


Vicious Summer said...

How in the world is this not a chicken buffet with all of the cats on your property?! I want to get chickens, but I know it would be a bloody disaster with Chichieto (our devil cat)..Am I wrong?

Anonymous said...


That's pretty cool, just in time for Easter too. You can also feed chicks instant oatmeal or baby cereal. We used to throw rice and Quaker oats into the blender and blend them a little bit. If you try this, do not blend to a powder--you need to leave some grits.


H Jr.

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Anonymous said...

Thanks every one.

Summer - The cats will be sleeping and the chickens (chicks included) just walk over their tails. Maybe there is some unspoken chicken law or something because they constantly eat or bring me geckos, grasshoppers, bugs, moths, small mice, sometimes rats and rarely a small bird. Dogs on the other hand will kill and carry around full sized chickens. Dogs that roam around at night looking to mate are also looking to kill stuff and dump garbage. I don't know what most of our cats are doing at night, but they are in when I go to bed and in at 6am. The chick count does always go down over time and I have seen Guaraguas (big hawk like bird) snatch them. Maybe our kitties aren't so innocent at night? I'd be more concerned about your dogs or if you aren't fenced...other people's dogs. katrina

Cassie said... cute! I love the babies. And they grow up really quick! Summer, we never had any problem with our cat and chickens, although we did keep them separate when they were this tiny. We don't have any problems with our dog either. I have a friend who raised chicks with a golden lab (huge dog), but she trained the dog to think of them as part of the dog pack (family) and never had any problems either. I think some dogs might be harder to break of it, and of course other random dogs and things, but cats there is no problem once they are big.

Love the pictures! Spring time in the tropics :-)

Cassie said...

I love the babies! So sweet!

Summer, we've never had a problem with our cat and the chickens. They sleep in the same area together even. Cats and chickens have for a long time lived in peace together on farms throughout time. I might be more careful when they are baby chicks like these little guys, but once they are chickens, you shouldn't have a worry...

Dogs on the other hand, you will have to train to help them realize that the chickens are part of the family. You can train your own dogs to protect them (my dog doesn't think anything about them), but it is something to be careful of with stray dogs.

I encourage you to get them! They are so fun.

Anonymous said...

The real problem is the mongooses in the island. They feast on these little ones. People call them "ardillas" which is a misnomer because they are not really squirrels. The mongooses were brought by the Spaniards from Southeast Asia to try to control the rats in the sugar cane fields. The rats came in the Spanish ships originally from Europe. They ended up with two pests to deal with. Beware that mongooses in the island carry rabies--be careful if you encounter them and also handling any "leftovers" they may leave behind.

H Jr.