Remember back in April our search for a tom turkey gobbler. Eventually we found "Fonzie" who is indeed a handsome boy. Although by turkey standards still young for breeding he has definitely kept his ladies content. We however did not allow the turkeys to hatch any eggs but did give some fertile eggs to a young local 4-H member for him to hatch for a start of turkeys. In return he shared 3 of his chicks with us. One hen tried to set all summer and O Wise One kept breaking her nest up. He wanted the young birds to get a little older before we tried raising little ones. She was persistent though.
She found the shelf that O Wise One has in the turkey house that he keeps the extra waterers on and hid her nest. It is atleast 7 foot off the floor! By the time O Wise One found it she was more than half through the hatch so we let her hatch her clutch of eggs. Yesterday was the big day and we had a heck of a time getting mama and babies off that shelf without any injuries. We do not like to have little ones when the weather is cold because of the expense of trying to keep them warm and running lights.
Once we had them all on the ground safely we put them under a wire cage that we keep to put over setting hens to protect them from the other hens and predators as well when they have little ones. We knew she was safe and contained while the chicks dried and we took that time to prepare a pen for her.When everything was ready Mama
And little ones were moved to their own warm brooder with lights until the chicks get a little larger.
Bless her heart she managed to hatch out all 6 of her eggs and not even a single weak bird or crooked foot among the lot. Not bad for a really young bird and late in the year too!
The brooder is wrapped in plastic to keep the wind and rain off and an electric heat lamp to keep them warm during those 40 degree nights of late. Hopefully with a little extra TLC we will be able to get these 6 up large enough to go back with mama to the big turkey pen.
Although not a convenient time it is good to see our turkey flock growing in leaps and bounds.
Blessings from The Holler
The Canned Quilter