Thursday, May 22, 2008

Chicks alone a lot today

These birds really grow fast. A little over a week old and already they've grown such that Scout has a hard time fitting them all underneath her when she broods them. Their growth progress, combined with somewhat warmer temps in Columbus today, has resulted in less need for her to keep them covered. So today they've been left alone for a stretch and we've gotten a good look at the "huddle." They spend a lot of time leaning on each other which also helps to keep them warm.

They aren't too mobile yet but have definitely gravitated to the right side of the box (as we are looking in) mainly because that's where the food comes from! It'd be a better view if they were closer to the camera but in the long run it's actually better if they keep their distance from the cam. Why's that you ask? In order to relieve themselves, they put their rumps up into the air and shoot their feces as far away from the nest as they can. If you haven't noticed yet, the back wall of the nest box is starting to accumulate feces and it's only a matter of time before the camera gets the same treatment!