About three weeks ago we had a clutch of chicks hatch!
We no longer use the incubators as back around the time of 50 Cent, we borrowed a bantam rooster off a customer to introduce new blood into our flock (the rooster was crazy and could practically fly) and therefore introduced a line of bantam Australorp.
The average person would probably think this wasn’t a smart move as not only are their eggs smaller however they aren’t really great as meat birds because, well they are smaller! However it is well known that bantams make great mothers.
Anyway we’ve moved our hens around a bit to have a good mix for the breeders and a good mix for the layers. Plus Kel’s parents have a small flock of their own for eggs. Our first clutch of “naturally raised” chicks came from their flock. It’s so great to not have to use the incubators or the brooders anymore and just let the mothers sit on their eggs and then raise the chicks. It is definitely the best way to do it and we’re glad that we’ve managed to get there so quickly (and without even trying really!).
My favourite part about it is that from day dot they are free range and scratching around the yard with their mother.