These mystery kits started out pink and grew white fur. At nearly a week old their ears turned grey and they started to get tiny nose markings. They're two weeks old now (nearly three weeks) and now they have grey ticking over most of their bodies, though their ears and noses are darker. I thought perhaps Squirrel (blue chinchilla) color, but they're born with their color. They're too light to be black chinchilla and they developed the color, rather than being born with the color. To add to it, their chests and around their eyes are white, and they have pink eyes. I thought maybe Frostie, but from the photos I've found it looks like they have a lot less markings than these babies do.
I did talk to the breeder we loaned the Jersey Wooly bucks to a while back. Each litter produced just a single doe, so there isn't much to choose from, but at least I'll get a doe from each.
I let the biggest of the chicks out of the barn brooder yesterday. The golden comet and the three California Whites that we bought from the feed store, plus several we hatched ourselves. I let them loose in the barn. Today I had to retrieve several that were stuck behind the brooder. None have been brave enough to leave the barn to go across the yard to the pool or down to the lake, so today I brought a big rubber bowl into the barn and gave them water. They were pretty happy to have it.
It rained this evening. Pretty good downpour too. Lightning, a little rumble of thunder here and there. I'm glad my plants are safely in the greenhouse and that I won't have to water the fruit trees for a couple days now.
I think I figured out the humidity problem with the hatching incubator. One of the rubber plugs from the bottom is missing. I can't figure out where it would have come off at. I put a too-small temporary replacement plug in and it's holding humidity again. Yay for simple fixes!
Because of the incubator issue and scheduling (I was house sitting all weekend), I did not put any eggs in the incubator this week for hatching in three weeks. Turns out that's a good plan anyway because that's the week we're supposed to get our guinea order from the hatchery. If I put in more eggs next Sunday it will keep us on schedule to have new chicks every week, just one week will be hatchery chicks instead of our own.
There are three little babies in the hatching incubator right now. One black, one yellow, and one yellow/grey mottled. I plan to put them out in the barn brooder tomorrow and cross my fingers that they all can get along and nobody gets trampled. The idea is that if the littler ones need more heat, they'll stay closer to the heat sources, and the bigger chicks (and ducklings) who don't need as much heat, will stay further from the light. The only overlap would be at the food and water containers. The original hatchery chicks (rare assortment) aregetting fully feathered now, but they're still small and I worry that putting them out now may be a mistake with two barn cats on the prowl. They're still a lot smaller than the ones I released yesterday. For now, they'll all just have to get along in the brooder.
Today Raisinet, Rose Tyler, and Clara Oswin Oswald went off to their new home. I'm excited for them. The lady was knowledgeable and it was clear they'll be well cared for.