Archives for : Flock Updates

{Flock Updates} The Naming Process

Naming the White Polish pullets has been difficult. Not just because all 13 basically look the same from afar, but because I didn’t brood them in the house. Brooding all the previous chicks in the house has helped them get use to me handling them and getting a sense of each pullet’s personality. Naming this group has taken a lot longer than normal. Earlier this month, I took an hour in the afternoon to watch them and decide who was who. They all got marked with nail polish so I could tell them apart without picking them up. Of course, the nail polish was rubbed off all of them by the 3 day due to weather. I’m going to have to figure out a more durable way to distinguish them from each other.

This is Alecto. Alecto is one of the Erinyes in Greek mythology, and her name means “the implacable or unceasing anger”. Her colour was Shockwave by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Alala. Alala is the personification of the war cry in Greek mythology, and her name means “battle-cry” or “war-cry”. Her colour was Umph by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Europa. Europa was a Phoenician princess who was abducted and taken to Crete by Zeus in the guise of a bull in Greek mythology, and her name means “wide face”. Her colour was Stratosphere by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Ossa. Ossa is the personification of rumors in Greek mythology. Her colour was Fathom by Formula X nail polish.

This is Nemesis. Nemesis was the goddess who enacted retribution against those who succumb to hubris (arrogance before the gods) in Greek mythology. Her colour was Dark matter by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Nike. Nike was the personification of victory in Greek mythology. Her name means “victory”. Her colour was Pedal to the Metal by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Sappho. Sappho was a prolific poet from Ancient Greece. Her colour was Ignite by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Megara. Megara was the oldest daughter of Creon, king of Thebes, and married Hercules in Greek mythology. Her colour was Wunderkind by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Electra. Electra was the daughter of King Agamemnon and Queen Clytemnestra in Greek mythology. She and her brother, Orestes, plotted revenge against their mother and stepfather, Aegisthus, for the murder of their father. Her colour was Moon Sign by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Persephone, Persephone was the daughter of Demeter and Zeus and ruled the underworld with Hades in Greek mythology. Her colour was Perfection by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Psyche. Psyche was a mortal woman who was turned into the goddess of the soul (by Zeus so she and Eros could be married as equals) in Greek mythology. Her colour was A+ by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Antiope. Antiope was an Amazon in Greek mythology (and a badass played by Robin Wright in the Wonder Woman movie). Her colour was Dramatic by FormulaX nail polish.

This is Iambe. Iambe was the goddess of satire and jest in Greek mythology. Her colour was Absolute Zero by FormulaX nail polish.

And this is Jareth, my cockerel that was supposed to be a pullet. Jareth is named after the Goblin King, played by David Bowie, in the movie Labyrinth. He’s having issues growing his crest out (the peafowl keep pulling all their crest feathers out), so he has a bit of a Friar Tuck thing going on right now.

Finally, this is Horus (again). He’s growing up very tall and straight up. So far, there haven’t been any issues with him (or Jareth) being in the same area as Memnoch. In fact, Memnoch has even chilled out on harassing Odysseus, which I’m sure Ody is happy about.

I’ve got the padwans living full-time with the older flock and my baby dragons (who will be another post), and they’ve been sleeping inside the covered part of the aviary since the beginning of the month. I still haven’t gotten them to go into the big coop for the night, but we’re taking baby steps.

{Flock Updates} Ups and Downs

So, Horus crowed yesterday evening. It wasn’t the standard dinosaur noise that my other roosters had at 1 month of age, it was a full-blown baby crow. The sound was a developed crow, it just wasn’t very loud. 7 roosters all crowing now. I often think to myself, when I’m sitting on the bench out in the aviary (which is the same bench I had to use to shower after the accident because I couldn’t stand), how is this my life? How did I get here? This isn’t my beautiful wife. The upside is that he definitely looks like he’s an Egyptian Fayoumi, and that’s pretty neat since this breed is supposed to be an old breed that is kinda rare here in the US.

The rest of the birds are doing okay. Everyone is going through their molt right now, and that’s varying degrees of severity. Mercury is molting pretty hard, Ava’Dara is just now coming out of a hard molt (she started first), Ronan is having molting issues due to his long tail and his need to scuffle with Lucien every other day, and it just looks like a couple of pillows blew up in each pen. The baby White Polish girls are getting bigger every day. Haven’t had any noticeable health issues since Adrastea died. I think they’re going to end up being a tough bunch to handle later on since they’ve been raised outside and not inside where they could be handled multiple times a day. So, when I “tag” each one with their colour so I know who’s who, it’s going to be a chicken rodeo.

On the downside of things, we found this tiny feral bun last night and he wasn’t doing too good. We tried to get him to recover, but we found him too late. He died earlier this morning. Obviously, if you’ve followed this blog since I started it, you know I’m a sucker for animals and animals in need. Because of that, I’m used to things not ending in a way that I would prefer. The only thing you can do is try.

One of my favourite Marvel Comics characters is the Inhuman teleporting bulldog, Lockjaw. I have always wanted to adopt a bulldog so I could name him after the character, and I was planning on doing just that after getting my house built. Best laid plans. Because of being forced to resign from my job, I was forced to stop planning a new house and to start figuring out how I was going to keep the bird rescue/sanctuary going and how to not run out of the medication I need to keep going in relatively less pain. My brother got me this Funko POP! toy instead.

{Flock Updates} Gallery Dump

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Well, I have really sucked at keeping up with things. We lost one of the baby polish (no idea what caused it), Mim has continued to thrive and grow stronger (as do Sy and Fin), One-Two and Mumbles have acclimated to living with Ronan and Lucien (Ronan and Lucien are having issues with each other), and everything keeps moving forward.

{Flock Updates} Cotton Puffs

My mom bought 15 White Polish chicks a few weeks ago. They hatched on Monday & arrived this morning from Murray McMurray Hatchery (along with a Mystery Chick – the brown little cinnamon roll in the middle of all the cotton puffs). I was beyond surprised that all 16 chicks were alive & active because I was honestly expecting some to die. 

The chicken side of the Flock just doubled. Mom wanted more Polish & I also missed having that breed in the Flock, but my main hope is that more females will chill all my dudes out some so they stop fighting with each other as much as they have started to. 

Arya is beside herself with excitement about the new editions. Toki is beside himself with exasperation about not getting his room back for another month. 

I’ve never had to raise this many chicks yet. It’ll be an adventure, that’s for sure. I’ve already decided that each one will get a nail polish dedicated to them so I can tell who’s who as they grow. Except for the Mystery Chick, obviously, since that one is definitely unique. It was listed as a “rare & exotic” mystery chick, but I have no idea what breed it is. Time to round up 16 names!

{Flock Update} Momma’s Little Monster(s)

Because I’m terrible at waiting to do things, I decided to try to get the baby dragons to walk around on the ground. As I should have predicted, it didn’t go as smoothly as I planned.

Fin was the first one out of the travel crate, as usual. He may have been the second one to hatch, but he is always the first to try something new. He didn’t last very long on the ground before he flew up to my shoulder.

We then waited for Sy & Mim to work up the courage to come out. This took a little time. Sy followed the same path as Fin: out of the crate, quickly walk from ground to my leg, then up to my shoulder next to Fin. Mim, on the other hand, flew straight from the crate to my shoulder & ended up on top of his brothers instead of me. I shouldn’t have been wearing a tank top for this. They have sharp tiny nails now. Also, all 3 crapped on me before I got them back to their pen & it got all over. It was just a bad fashion choice for this experiment.

I also got pecked in the eye 4 times by Sy. That little turd always goes for my eyes. Anyhow, I spent a good portion of 30 minutes with these three sitting along my outstretched arm (thankfully, my hands only go painfully numb if my arm is bent), watching the rest of the birds do their bird thing. Damien, Richmond & Dalton came by a couple of times, but they were mostly interested in doing their parameter patrolling. Ronan, Mumbles & Mina were very interested in the peachicks & kept coming back to stare at them. Ronan was very upset he couldn’t also fit on my shoulder with them.

After some time, Fin ventured off me to the top of the carry crate. He was followed by Sy. From there, Fin went to the deck & Sy followed. 

Mim did not follow.

Eventually, Fin & Sy explored the ground a bit before circling back around to me. 

It wasn’t what I expected them to do. I kind of expected that they would rush out of the travel crate & be a pain in the ass to round back up. They haven’t been as clingy since I’ve been putting them outside all day with the other birds, so it surprised me that they didn’t leave me to explore the new area. Not really helping me with not being a helicopter mom with them.

{Flock Updates} Dracarys!


Fin Fang Foom

Mad Mim

Some time next week, these three should be ready to be on the ground and outside 24/7. I’m still not sure if I’ll be ready for that.

{Flock Updates} I’m In So Much Trouble

Mim has been recovering very well! So well, in fact, that all three of my baby dragons have been spending most of their days outside in a playpen I’ve got set up in the aviary (which I still haven’t gotten help fixing from the last windstorm). I love watching them jump & fly around when they’re outside. I love watching them preen & fall asleep on top of the box next to their brooder. 

I am so in love with these three. I never thought I’d get this attached to them. I don’t know if I can hatch & raise peachicks to sell. They are so delightful, even though they stink so much now I have to clean the brooder every two days & that’s just from them being in it at night now. 

At the end of the month, they should be fully feathered & ready to start walking around in the ground! It’ll be fun to see them running around in the grass & weeds. So many pictures!

On the 24th, the order of white polish chickens my mom placed should be shipped. We needed more hens here after the bounties the Year of the Rooster gave me this spring & I couldn’t find anyone on CL that wasn’t trying to unload large fowl chickens (Ava’Dara is the only non-bantam we have), we ended up placing an order with a hatchery. Also, my mom missed seeing the Ithakē ladies out there with Odysseus & no one in the whole of Colorado had any polish hens. 

I think once this group can integrate with the others (probably sometime in September, depending on the weather), it’ll calm things down between all the dudes I have currently. Ronan & Lucien have been getting into fights lately & that’s just very much out of character for those two. I definitely feel like it has to do with One-Two & Mumbles being next to them, but I’m not sure. I don’t know enough about chickens to be 100% about anything with them. I guess I’ll find out soon if my feeling is correct.

{Flock Updates} That’s Not Supposed To Be There

While trying to drench Mim yesterday morning, I noticed he had something stuck in the back of his throat. Normally, the peafowl mouth/throat is terrifying on its own, so you can imagine the freak out I had when it looked like something was crawling out of it. Looked like a sarlac pit for a minute. Anyhow, I got Dad to hold him while I fished the object out, and it turned out to be a wood chip collecting food particles! I was immensely relieved because, being a World Champion Jump To Conclusions Mat player that I am, I had convinced myself he had gapeworm. You know, despite the fact there’s absolutely no way he could have gotten it in the first place. Mim also seemed very relieved to have it out of his throat.

(i was trying to get a picture of Mim sleeping under the heater, but Sy kept popping up)

Yesterday, he was doing much better. Well enough to really fight getting his meds. 

Today, he actually flew out of the brooder and into my hands and he took his meds with some egg yolk! Who knows how long that wood chip was in there, in just glad my tiny Mad Mim is back to normal. 

{Flock Updates} The Big Day Out

This morning, I took the Dracarys Flock to Mim’s appointment with Dr. Miller (I always go in as early as possible to avoid stress on the birds from other animals). I ended up bringing all 3 to help keep the stress levels down in Mim since I’ve read peafowl can actually stress themselves to death. I swear to god if this isn’t an animal that is so me, I don’t know what is. Bringing all 3 turned out to be a good visual for Dr. Miller on how stunted Mom’s growth is compared to Sy and Fin. 

Dr. Miller checked Mim out, made sure his wings had full range of motion, listened to his air sacs, all the usual wellness exam stuffs. The good news is that she didn’t think his respiratory symptoms were bad enough to cause the wing drooping (usually, dropping wings is not a good sign) because his air sacs sounded fine. He’s too small right now to do x-rays to be 100% sure, but she was fairly confident that, due to his difficult hatch, he was just very weak and didn’t have the strength to keep his wings tucked up next to his body like a regular bird. Basically, Mim is the peachick version of pre Super Soldier serum Steve Rogers. 

She did want to put him on a low dose of antibiotics for the next two weeks since he did have mucus in his mouth in Sunday. This is basically just a precaution to make sure it doesn’t turn into something more serious since his immune system is somewhat compromised. We’re in kind of a waiting pattern to see if he pulls through and keeps going right now. Of course, I will do whatever I need to in order to make sure he has the best chance at survival. Even if that means he has to be the boy in the bubble as he gets older.

I am extremely thankful I found Dr. Miller and Broomfield Veterinary Hospital for the birds. She always explains everything she’s checking out and how she’s checking it out so that I can do a lot of troubleshooting on my own without having to go in. Which is a good thing since I’m a helicopter bird mom and worry about every little thing that happens if I don’t know how to triage it. She’s very much like Toki and Arya’s vet, Dr. Guster (who is with a different vet office but totally worth it because he’s probably the only person Toki will let handle him besides me or my family), with sharing information so that I’m better informed about how to care for these animals. I appreciate professionals like that, who know money isn’t sprouting out of my wallet and are willing to help me make informed decisions on whether or not I need to pay vet fees. It’s a nice change from the vets I saw with the dogs I had prior to Toki and Arya. They nickel and dimed me and ultimately where the reason for those dogs being in so much pain I had to have them euthanized.

I know a lot of people think I’m wasting money by having a vet I take my chickens and peafowl to. However, I don’t think it is. A chicken’s life isn’t less than mine just because the food industry tells me they are. In fact, I feel that because animals feed and clothe us that is the very reason we should do whatever we can to make their lives have better quality. Obviously, I’m not raising these birds for food – I don’t even eat their eggs as often as they and the dogs do. It’s life and it’s worthy of being given the chance. If I can give them a good life, maybe I can make a good life for myself.

{Flock Updates} Mim’s the Word

Mim is doing better today! He was still a little weak from not eating much yesterday (little dudes can pack it away like you wouldn’t believe), but he was hoping around with his brothers. I am so relieved by this. It looks like the Corid & electrolytes got rid of the excess mucus & boosted his system enough to get him going again. I am still waiting to hear back from the vet so I can take him in just to be on the safe side.

I also tried to give them some more vertical room in their brooder & I don’t thing they like it. Of course, it looks like a shack from a Harry Potter book that’s just one fart away from blowing over, so I really don’t blame them for being hesitant on trying to fly up to the roosts. It’s a good thing I’ve spent my entire life trying to be a general artist & not an engineer or architect. This thing is abysmal.