Last night we were a little concerned about #6. After hatching in the late afternoon, it was having trouble getting going. Typically the mother sits on all of the hatchlings until they are done hatching and are all fluffed out. In this case, the little suprise egg was so much later than the rest, I think she had given up on it hatching. She peeked into the nest every so often to look at it, but she was busy taking care of the other 5 and couldn't go in and sit on him/her. Corey gingerly took the new little one outside and set it by the others so he/she could warm up and dry off in the afternoon sun. When Corey set the chick down, the mom pecked Corey hard on the hand. Corey warned me to turn around, just in case the mom attacked and killed the chick, seeing it as an intruder. Instead she inspected it closely and then seemed to understand that it was one of hers. While it's nest mates were running about, this little one was having a hard time figuring out how to get around. It's legs didn't seem to be working right. No doubt it was still very tired from making it's way out of the shell. In this video taken yesterday evening, you can see, it is having a bit of trouble.
When the hen and the other chicks went in to the nest for the night, the late bloomer was stuck outside, still unable to walk. Corey tucked him into the box with the others and momma bird gently coaxed it under her belly. After a good night's sleep, you could hardly tell this one from the rest. So glad it is doing well. Here they are this morning.
Yesterday as we were watching the surprise chick hatch, Corey and I were talking about the mom chicken and what a good job she was doing. Corey was quiet for awhile, and then he said "Can you imagine how she felt when she heard the first peep after all those months waiting?". See why I love that guy?