backyard chickens · chicken breeds · Chickens · homesteading · raising chickens · raising chicks · roosters · Serama

New Noises and New Life?

Sometimes as I get older I feel like the very basic things I once knew are somehow slipping from me. For instance when I was a child I was taught that chickens go “bok bok bok” and roosters go “cock-a-doodle-doo!” In my teens I realized roosters speak all sorts of languages and say something different in every one of them. In Dutch they say Kook-a-la-coo, which I very likely spelled wrong. I can’t remember what they say in French but its different from both of those! Now I am equally baffled by my hens. One of the Brahmas got out while I was feeding them yesterday and I went to pick her up to put her back in the run as she was munching on some grass. She wasn’t happy with me so she made her displeasure clear with several defiant honks. Since when do chickens honk?? I thought that was geese! To add to the confusion I just heard the most dreadful noise. It made my heart stop as I thought something was horribly horribly wrong. It sounded like something between a screaming bunny and the noise your fingernails make as they drag across a chalkboard. “What the hell was that?!” Turns out it was Caesar, my wee little Serama rooster, trying to crow for the first time. Amazing. I hope he gets better at it because that was dreadful.

In the meanwhile my adult Serama hen has been laying an egg every day for four days straight, granted she ate two so the numbers are still the same for me. I didn’t know she was capable and hope this means she’s happy. Today is the 19th day the first batch of eggs have been in the incubator. Some people say that Seramas hatch at 18-19 days, others say they have the same hatching time as any other chicken at 21 days. The incubator got bumped two days ago and the temp went down ten degrees. I am not sure how long it was like that, it could have been as much as 24 hours and I sincerely hope this didn’t make them unhatchable so close to their actual hatch date. I think this just means they may take longer to hatch. I wait with anticipation and look into the incubator to see if there’s any movement or little peeping noises coming from the eggs. So far nothing. My boyfriend was insistent one was hatching two days ago (sometimes he’s rather impatient and pessimistic as he believes nothing will actually hatch and is just taking some time out of his day for some gentle teasing of my new hobby.) The egg wasn’t hatching. It was a pencil mark, not a crack, used to identify which way I should be turning the egg each day. At least one of the eggs is really heavy. I wonder if that means its almost done.