1) They are insanely cute;
2) I am down to six productive hens!
How'd we get down to six? Well, depredations last year reduced our numbers, as did the ladies' crazed jealousy of the Cochin duo's beautiful white fluffiness. And now one of the two Ameraucanas isn't laying—at all. Just up and quit. If she doesn't get going soon it's gonna sound a lot like "Chicken Run" back there. Cleo the Maran is broody. Again. And Pearl Wyandotte and Rhode Island Red Sonja are both old, so I don't expect them to lay much anymore. That leave six out of the ten working full-time.
Day Onehatchery. One was DOA. The list that came with them said 10 were Black-crested Blue Polish, one is a Black-breasted Red Cubalaya—that one won't stay here long!—and 16 were "filler chicks." That's what you get when you order the Mystery Assortment!
Day TwoThe Farm Store had Gold-laced Wyandotte chicks, and even though Marilyn and Pearl were just okay layers at best, people meeting the chickens for the first time almost always pointed them out and said, "Ooh, that one's so pretty!" Plus, I'm sentimental about the breed since they were our first-ever chickens. So we picked up two and added them to the group.
One of the little yellow fluffballs was deceased this morning when I went in to check on them, so starting on Day Three we are back at 25 chicks.