Every day since the first batch of baby chicks came a week ago, Sylvan has asked to go see the baby chicks. At first, he did't want to hold them, but now he can't get enough! yesterday, he learned to catch them. It was adorable watching him chase after them and get frustrated when he missed, but he finally got the hang of it. Then he wanted to catch one for me and for Hazel, for her to hold. She was fascinated by them, and wanted to reach out to touch them but did NOT want to hold it. When it was in my hand, she would reach out with one finger, then want me to put it down, but as soon as I put it down, she wanted me to pick one up again. I could only take that for so long. Sylvan wanted to feed them, so he took the feed scoop and actually got it in the feedings area! (instead of all over the floor).
We get the chicks in the mail as day-old birds. We use a design for the brooder house from an old war-era extension office booklet. It shows how to make a low-cost and super effective brooder area out of plywood (since metal was so scarce during the war). They stay in the brooder house till they are about two weeks (their "teenage" years), then they move out to the pasture to get bugs, grass and feed. They LOVE the grasshoppers, and they help fertilize the fields in the process. They're only cute for about a week, but they're super fun for the kids!