The snow is disappearing as temperatures warm.  It's now spring time in Maine, a time when one's mind turns to....chicks!

That's right, young chickens have been delivered and are currently residing in local area hardware establishments like Aubuchon and Tractor Supply!  Everyone from those that farm for a living to aspiring backyard farmers are selecting from the various breeds, and then carting these small and very cute feathered chirpers home to get them started.

If taken care of properly, most young hens will begin laying eggs at six months of age.

As with everything, precautions must be taken.

  1. For the safety of the birds, it's good to keep them entirely enclosed to keep predators like foxes and hawks away from them.
  2. Chickens are dirty and salmonella is a very real possibility.  Remember to wash your hands after handling the birds or any equipment used to feed or take care of them with.  Take your shoes off before entering your home.  Try to keep them away from your face and never kiss them. My god, did we just say "never kiss a chick?"  Guess we did.
  3. Of course, be EXTRA diligent if you plan on using a heat lamp to keep the young birds warm.  It's a good idea not to use a heat lamp within your home.

Anyway, it's always a highlight this time of year when visiting a hardware store to see young chicks, who really don't even mind if you snap a picture or two.