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Will these chicks join the other chickens or will they be kept separate until they go off to freezer camp?

Once they’ve had time to acclimate to the maternity yard (which is out by the big coop where the other chickens are), I believe Fred is planning to leave the door to the maternity yard open so that the new guys can come and go at will. Cornish X Rocks get so big so fast that they tend not to go too far from the food, though, so I’d be surprised if they do much exploring beyond their little yard.

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Can you tell their sex at that age? How old do they have to be before you can tell?

I think that there are people at the hatchery who know how to sex them, but it’s a mystery to me. You can usually tell by the time they’re 2 or 3 months old, though sometimes it takes even longer. That’s for regular chicks, though – I believe with the Cornish X Rocks, we’ll know sooner which sex they are.

Curious added: Yeah, it all depends on the type of birds they are. Some modern type birds have feathering genes in them that allow you to separate them by the growth of the primary wing feathers right at hatch. Some breeds have colouring differences that separate male and female, and I won’t gross you out with the details of how they sex the rest of them!

I’m pretty sure I saw an episode of Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe where he was learning to sex chicks. I… believe it involved squeezing the poop out of them, didn’t it?

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Newt is counter surfing! Does he just lay there or is he scooting around the counter, pulling himself by the backsplash?

Oh, he just lays there. Alll day long – and sometimes all night long – sound asleep. Occasionally he’ll curl around the bowl where I put empty egg shells. He’s good about knowing when I’m about to start making dinner, and he vamooses until the cooking, eating, and cleaning is done, then back he goes.

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LOL.. “ribbon winners in the Freezer Camp taste-o-lympics” You sure are a delicate southern flower there aren’t you Robyn!! πŸ™‚

Once upon a time, I made the mistake of referring to a chicken-based vegetable pie we were eating for dinner as McLovin’ Pie (McLovin’ being the chicken base of that pie; he was our first rooster), and there was a hullabaloo and an outcry, so I try to kind of skirt the issue most of the time to spare the feelings of my more sensitive readers. πŸ™‚

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I really do hope Arnold will stay – you can’t eat something you’ve named, anyway. I think it’s a kind of a rule.

Arnold will not be accompanying the rest of the chicks to Freezer Camp. He won’t grow as fast, so won’t be ready to leave when they are. We don’t know Arnold’s sex yet, so he could be a hen, whereupon she’d be around for a good long time. Of course, even if he does turn out to be a rooster, he could still end up staying, depending on his disposition and how the hens feel about it; having a rooster unrelated to our hens would be a good way to bring fresh blood into the flock. But in any case he’ll be around for at least several months.

“I am just a wee bebbeh chick, poor sad, defenseless meeeeeee…”

(“Are they buyin’ it?”)

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Forgive my ignorance, but how do you know that Arnold is male? And why do you have to dip their beaks in water?

I don’t know if Arnold is male or female; it just seemed like a good name. We don’t stand on technicalities here; we used to have a rooster named Michelle.

You have to dip their beaks in water to teach them to drink. They don’t have a hen to teach them that stuff, so you dip their beaks in water, and instinct takes over. They think about it for a second, and then swallow the water, and from then on they know how and where to drink! It’s awfully cute – I wish I’d made a video of it.

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Be careful of the raccoons – I luv em and they are sweet – but they are nocturnal. We have a problem in North Texas right now with raccoons showing up with distemper. You shouldn’t see them during the day.

Oh, I’ve never seen one during the day; it would freak me out if I did, I’d assume they had rabies. They sure do show up at the feeding station the INSTANT the sun goes down, though!

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I had been meaning to tell you that I finally started reading Fred’s book “No Limit” (I downloaded the e-book some months past) and was delighted at Mister Boogers’s cameo. The book itself is good, fast-paced and exciting. Reminds me of Dean Koontz.

Obviously I’m just posting this so I can post the link to his book again – but I have to agree that it’s a really good book (I think The Convert is even better!) and I think everyone should buy a copy. I am not at ALL prejudiced. πŸ˜‰ (I’m glad you like it, Noelegy!)

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Also, the video with the racoons reminded me of a commercial that was out not too long ago. It was for Vision World or Lens Crafters or some eye wear place. The lady walks out on to her porch before going to bed to call the “cat” in for the night. “Here kitty” is heard while she herds the racoon into the house. LOL! Here’s the link.

I swear, it’s like I’m looking into my future. I saw a raccoon on the porch the other night and THOUGHT IT WAS CORBIE, because Corbie’s tail looks very much like a raccoon tail. It’s only a matter of time before I’m flinging open the door and saying “HOW did you get out there?! Get in here!” and then snoozing with a raccoon flopped over my feet.

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I couldn’t help but wonder about this “white racoons can’t jump” theory you have, and thanks to google..

(YouTube link) which made me laugh out loud – so glad I wasn’t drinking anything I might have spit it out all over my screen.

but then there was this.. which is probably way more helpful

I’ve made sure that Fred has seen that second link (okay, that first one, too!) and he’s planning to get something built this Summer.

The funny thing is that as soon as he talked about building something to keep the raccoons out of the cat food, he started feeling bad about the fact that the raccoons wouldn’t be getting any more cat food. I wouldn’t be surprised if he then builds a feeding station especially for the raccoons and possums.

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Doover, Hoover, and Cooper sound like frat nicknames – the frat is Phi Phi Phi and the other members are Looper, Trooper, Boomer, Bloomer, Blooper, Woofer, Noodle, Pooper, Doodle, Swooper, Spoofer, Snoozer and Moocher. Phi Phi Phi is famous for their ‘nip parties, they’ve installed climbing walls all over the house and are always on super secret double probation.

When the Phis are home, they mostly hang out in the glassed in front porch and spy on their neighbors. They’re no longer invited to parties at other frats – the shredded furniture, hidden vomit, food stealing and unholy habit of yowling when they get wound up – have made them unwelcome all over campus.

(Woofer got his nickname by getting all nipped up and then playing fetch like a damned dog – he’s still trying to live down the shame)

I love this so much. You KNOW I saved this in my cat names folder – we are SO going to have a litter of Phis at some point!

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BTW- in cat language, carriers are called P.T.U’s (prisoner transport unit). I picked this up on another blog somewhere IIRC, and it’s now part of my vocabulary.

Probably an accurate description from their point of view.

I actually knew that – I always forget to use the correct terminology. πŸ™‚

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If anyone wants to laugh…check out this little monkey. She is the only survivor of her litter and is a little terror! πŸ™‚

YouTube link.

What a cute little terror she is!

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I am thinking she looks prego. Now, I could always tell by the change in the nipple texture. Get Fred to feel her up πŸ™‚

Oh, sure. NOW it’s nipple TEXTURE. In the past it’s been nipple color. I’m starting to think that y’all are just nipple obsessed. (And for the record, I took a peek and there’s nothing remarkable about them… YET.)

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Silly boys.

Batman fits nicely on that step, doesn’t he?

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Last weekend I took my iPad into the foster room while I was hanging out with Lilybet. I was trying to take her picture, but she refused to look at me. So I used the Pet Pic App, which will use a noise – either a cat noise, a dog noise, or a rubber ducky squeaky noise, you choose which – to get the cat to look at you, so you can take their picture.

Lilybet was so freaked out by the cat noise that she went insta-poof and started wildly racing around the room trying to find the offending cat. Poor Lilybet.


“I did not care for that.”

“Is it out there?”

I had to distract her so she’d stop looking. Luckily, she’s easy to distract.

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Coooooooorbs, beautiful Corbs!
“Go ‘way, lady. Tryin’ to sleep, here.”


2012: Alice showing Sally Peppers who the boss is with that outstretched paw just kills me DEAD.
2011: No entry.
2010: No entry.
2009: No entry.
2008: No entry.
2007: It was severely gross, yet oddly fascinating.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.



2-15-13 — 29 Comments

  1. Thanks for the morning smile…and using my comment (video link) in today’s post! πŸ™‚ Off to check out Pet Pic!

  2. Wow, in that 2012 entry, it looks like Alice is trying to drill a hole into Tommy’s skull with that glare.

    At first, I was all, why is she glaring like that? Isn’t Tommy her true love? And then I remembered that’s Stinkerbelle. Stinkerbelle must think Alice is an ungrateful brat who doesn’t know her luck.

  3. Oooh, my birthday was yesterday and my husband got me an iPad Mini. I am totally downloading Pet Pic.

    Boy, Lilybet is pretty. I do hope she is pregnant because I want to see what kind of kittens she produces!

    Finally, that kitten video is just adorable. When I started watching it I was thinking, “Oh, this is long, I don’t know if I want to watch the whole thing,” but I became entranced. And what a tolerant big brother/sister the adult tabby is. So cute.

    • Also, that is Nikita (kitten – female) and BoBo (big brother). You can find more videos of them on youTube by searching on FaqYouTB. BoBo loves to be vacuumed! πŸ™‚

  4. The Phi Phi Phi story made me laugh. LOVE IT!
    Arnold is adorable! I hope he gets to stay around for a good long time.

  5. Hey Robyn, have you ever had any cats that are overly aggressive with their own tails? My littlest, Duchy, is always fighting with her tail. It’s almost seems like it’s a separate entity over which she has no control. She’s always batting and biting at it violently and just last night she bit it so hard it made her yelp out and bolt under the bed. It’s really bothering me and I’m wondering if anyone else has experienced this before.

      • One of my cats does the same thing and she has very sensitive skin as well (if I try to pet her back she twitches and nips at me). I now give her grain free cat food and it’s helping. She isn’t as obsessed with her tail and her skin seems less sensitive.

        I also love Arnold and now that it’s payday I’m looking forward to betting on Lilybet’s kitties. She looks a lot like my Tortie Boo. I’m really looking forward to KITTIES!

        Edited to add – Wouldn’t be fun to name the next bunch of black kittens after famous witches and wizards. Kitty Gandalf, kitty merlin, and kitty Elphaba anyone?

    • my parents had a dog who did this with her tail; she had nerve damage from abuse sustained as a puppy, but there can be organic issues that cause similar nerve damage. They feel the sensation of something stinging or biting or moving over part of the body, usually the tail or hindquarters, and attack (what they think is) the threat. I’d say if she doesn’t grow out of it by 12-18 months, have her evaluated by a vet. There are medicines that can help, and it’s a really miserable thing to live with.

      My parents took Alyssa to the vet when they realized she couldn’t sleep for more than 30-45 minutes without jumping up snarling and snapping at her own (missing) tail. She’d bite her butt and legs in an attempt to get to the phantom tail, sometimes drawing blood, and she was visibly confused and distraught over it. She never got completely over it, but the medicine and acupressure techniques the vet gave my parents helped her a lot – she was at least finally able to sleep.

  6. Many years ago, I worked at the IRS service center in Atlanta, entering business and farm tax returns into the system. I enjoyed reading the profession listed for each person. One of the must unusual I ran across was “Chicken Sexer.” I’ll never forget that!

    • There was a big brouhaha in New Zealand over some wedding-dress contest a newspaper was running; one of the ladies involved in the drama was listed as being a pig midwife. I can’t even imagine!

  7. The Convert was awesome. Stressed me out in places, but I didn’t want it to end. I noticed that Spot had a cameo in that one. I chuckled at that! I have read all his works now. I think The Convert was my favorite.

  8. Ahhh — Mis Lilybet is most definitely preggers — I can’t wait to see those bebehs in about a month or so.

  9. Robin, I am a vegan and you are the first meat eater I’ve encountered with whom I have no problems. I have serious issues with today’s methods of animal farming and I can’t tolerate the fact that people will sit there and chow down on a burger but won’t admit to themselves that an animal died to give them that meal.

    The fact that you love and care for your animals and in fact spoil them rotten just makes me smile. Yes, they eventually go to “freezer camp,” but their moments right up until then are the best an animal can have. And I think it is wonderful that you would have McLovin’ Pie and that you acknowledge the actual chicken that is feeding you.

    You keep on spoiling those chickens and giving cookies to those pigs. And eat all the McLovin’ Pie you want. Show the rest of those meat eaters how it should be done!

  10. Kittens are so wild–I wish I had some of that excess energy!

    I’m hoping Arnold isn’t just a rare breed but also a hen. May she live happily ever after and avoid the freezer camp πŸ™‚

  11. That kitten in the video is adorable and so pretty! What a hellion; love her attitude and energy.

    Coincidentally, we have the exact coffee table and matching end table in that video. They were my late Mother’s.

  12. Your Lilybet-distracting pics reminded me to give a big THANK YOU to you for your toy recommendations. First, it should be known that I only even have a cat because of your blog. Then I couldn’t help but be intrigued by the toys you have kicking around there. I bought the Kong Kickeroo for my guy and he LOVES the thing and bunny-kicks the heck out of it, it’s so cute. The other day Da Bird was on sale on Amazon for like $3, came to $7.50 with shipping, so I bought one. holy cat crack, Robyn. We keep it in a closet and any time someone opens that closet, he comes bounding out of parts unknown, chattering frantically. He leaps and attacks and then after our play session he is a total lovebug to his mommy for playing with him, so it’s a win-win all around. One question, though. Do you go through “birds” really quickly? We’ve had it about a week and the thing is already tattered to heck so i’m going to have get a few replacements to keep on hand. I just wondered if your cats were that hard on it or if i’m doing it wrong. At any rate, thank you SO MUCH for the recommendations because they are both big winners in this house.

      • Sorry, just seeing this so you probably found it already but yes, it’s Da Bird. They sell it at Petco too but I’m sure it would be cheaper on Amazon.