Today is an exciting day at the office...WHY?? The baby chickens for the 4-H Chick-Chain project came in the mail! Thats right, the US Mail! We weren't expecting the chicks until yesterday and we got a call this morning from the postmaster saying, "Can you please come get your chicks, now??". For those of you who have been around baby chicks you can atest to the fact that baby chicks, for such little bodies, they can make quite the racket! This reminds me of when I was little and we would order baby chicks. My brother and I would sit around with a chicken catalog and pick out the ones we wanted to buy. Once the order was placed we would wait in anticipation for the big day when we would get the phone call from the postmaster.
What is Chick-Chain? It's a project that 4-Hers can sign up for. They pay a small fee upfront and have to attend a mandatory meeting before receiving their chicks. At the meeting we cover chick care, management, the equipment they will need to purchase and how to build a "safe place" for their chicks once they get them home. It's sort of like preparing for a new baby - you have to get a room ready, buy food, get waterers, feeders, a heat lamp, wood chips, etc. The kiddos will pick up their chicks on Friday afternoon and feed them for about 20 weeks. The chicks are breeds that will end up being laying hens and roosters. This is neat because it gives the kids an opportunity to start their own flock! The kids will take home aproxamately 10 chicks and then bring they back for the county fair. There they will show their chickens and be rewarded for their efforts by getting to sell a few chickens to people in the community. It's a neat project that teaches responsiblity, record keeping, and many other virtues!