Spring has sprung and with it I have acquired five new chicks (two more are coming this weekend.)
Now, comes the part that I always want to dismiss--naming the chicks.
So, I am turning to you, Chicken Women readers, to help me name the chicks. Below are photos of the five chicks that are rambling around in their warm aviary pen. Below the photos, which were beautifully taken by Keith Skelton at www.keithskeltonphoto.com, is a description of their breed.
If you have a clever name or two, or even five for that matter, PLEASE send me a comment or post it on Facebook. I need all the help I can get!
#1 - Norwegian Jaerhon
This energetic, high-stepping chick was the first that dared to fly onto the roost. I covet her little white spot on her head; it almost looks like a bald spot reflecting the light. The Norwegian Jaerhon breed appeared in the United States only within the last decade. The chickens are relatively small in size and good layers of white eggs. The Jaerhon is the only breed credited to Norway. It was developed in the 1920s near Stavanger. This breed lays so many eggs that they have been known to lay themselves out. Oh, those Norwegians. They are always so hard working and productive.
#2 Silver Phoenix
Well, we started out in Norway and now we're headed to Japan. This rare breed, the Silver Phoenix, was developed over 1,000 years ago. Known for its long tails, it's a small bird that comes in either Silver or Gold. Unfortunately, I had a gold, too, and it died this morning. The Silver Phoenix is known for being docile and is not much of a layer--only one egg per week. It has threatened status and is considered a sustainable heritage chicken breed. Good thing this "masked" chick is such a looker with her Egyptian kohl eyeliner, because it seems that I won't be getting many eggs from her.
#3 Black Silkie
When I first met her, I thought something was wrong with her feet. I didn't realize she has five toes! In addition to five toes, Black Silkies have dark blue flesh and bones, and blue earlobes. She's so calm and docile, a temperament that already causes her to be pushed around by fellow chicks. Experts believe the Silkie originated in China or perhaps India or Java. Marco Polo was the first to give an account of this kind of bird (and he didn't do it while closing his eyes and saying his name outloud in a swimming pool). I wonder if the bird acquired the name, Silkie, because Polo was traveling the Silk Road?
#4 Black-Crested White Polish
I'd like to think this is the Black-Crested White Polish but I think we picked up the wrong bird when grabbing her from the feed store. Instead, I believe she is a White Polish without the Black-Crested headdress. (Although she does have some black peeking out so who knows.) She's a pretty little girl with a smashing neckline that a nice bauble would look good on. Thoughts are that this breed originally came from the Netherlands, but ended up getting imported from...you guessed it, Poland, to England. This breed has been around since at least the 16th century (ah, the tales she could tell!) and used a lot for exhibition.
#5 Gold-Laced Polish
With a better headdress than a woman at the Kentucky Derby or guests attending a royal's wedding, this little adorable Gold-Laced Polish already looks like she's wearing a babushka. She has the same history as her White Polish friend but with colors that are more exaggerated. I have a feeling this one is going to make me chuckle whenever I see her.
Here's the flock of six before they became five. The one in the back center is the Golden Phoenix who chose to fly to higher heights rather than reside in the coop on the hill.
Guess which chick grows up to be which hen...
(It's not brain shattering to figure it out, but it's fun to see what their "adult" looks like.)