As you have probably heard, the chickens are here! After 22 days in the incubator the big day had finally arrived. When we entered the classroom in the morning there were two beautiful black chicks in our incubator. Their feathers were already fluffed up. They probably hatched late at night. The next arrival came at about 9am and another one at recess.
The class had been very worried because on day 14 the incubator was left open while the class went to the Zoo. This left the eggs without heat for more than 6 hours. After candling the eggs it was only clear that the ducks eggs were still alive. Ducks swim in their shells and move around during candling. Day 21 came and went without any chicks hatching. Finally the first little hole appeared and we could hear the chicks chirp in their eggs. We sang to the eggs and they started rolling in response. At this stage it is very tempting to help the chicks hatch. However any interference is usually fatal. It took all of our restrained not to open the incubator. After 2 days of struggling they all made it safely. Welcome to the Blue Planet little guys!
Now it is time to observe chick behavior. Our chicks cry for us when they are left alone. They seem to like music and are very curious. Chicks are not supposed to eat or drink in their first 24 hours after hatching. Apparently our little guys didn’t get that memo. They started pecking on their feed right away.
Presumably half of our chicks will be roosters. If you or anybody you know is looking for a hand raised rooster, we might have two for you to choose from. Stay tuned for updates!