Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Chicks back at the library tomorrow!

Hey chick lovers!  The chicks are coming back to the library tomorrow!  We will have 9 chicks here.  Not sure what time, but we are excited to see them!  They should be about twice the size they were when they left us...I will certainly post new pictures!

Till then!

Broadway Gal

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Solar Dancing Chick!


So, this is the little Solar Dancing Chick that a library staff member gave me this morning!  She wanted to make sure that I didn't miss the chicks now that they are all off at their new homes. 

Well, thankfully, I've recieved news that Charlotte and Zippy are doing great!  They are having a great time at their new home and their family even built a perch for them which they love!  Awesome!

 - Broadway Gal

Friday, March 16, 2012

Chickee and Louis

So this video is particularly funny because I talk all about Charlotte and Louis when really, this is Chickee (the chick named by Children's Park) and not Charlotte!  It's easy to have cases of mistaken identity when you are a chicken. 

So, now we have video of all the chicks except for poor Charlotte.  Charlotte is out to foster, so maybe her family can send some pics. 

Oh, the chicks are being so sweet now.  Just curled up sleeping together...aw...

Despereaux and Stewart


Tacky's Video!

So here is Tacky's video!  We are so glad that Tacky hatched.  We named three eggs during the candling process which is always a very bad idea.  We were extremely lucky that two of our three hatched...so we got Tacky and Zippy but no Swimmy.  :(

Broadway Gal

More videos of chicks...

Here is the video for Cauli le Poussin.  Please don't judge me too harshly for my murder of the French language.  I have lots of friends (and family members too!) that could have done this a lot better than me.

Oh, well...this hoosier girl has yet to see Paris!

Welcome Cauli le Poussin!  For more details on Cauli LP's travels check out his blog post here:

More videos coming soon!
Broadway Gal

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Last two babies out the door!

Our last two chick-a-dees to be fostered left the building around 5:00 tonight.  So that means 5 families are having the unique experience of taking care of baby chicks for two weeks.  It is a lot quieter here now that 11 of our chicks have made their way out into the world.

So, I know I haven't been as prolific in my blogging this year as last and I thought it was about time I tell you all why.  So, Wild Thang, my right hand assistant, is in Philadelphia for the PLA conference.  You can read about it here:  http://mplcatseyeview.blogspot.com/2012/03/i-knew-it-would-come-to-this.html

So that means I've been working hard on chick hatching, doing story times (10 programs total this week that Wild Thang usually does), pulling books for teachers, doing booktalks, and trying to keep my office not look like a bomb was dropped on it and not really succeeding. 

Well, there's always tomorrow. 

Wild Thang is going to return and find the program room a mess, Summer Reading not planned, our desk chaos, and my office akin to the bog of eternal stench (oh wait...that's the incubator). 

More babies off to new adventures!


Four more of our chicks are off to foster!  Despereaux, Stewart, Toto, and Tacky have all made their way out into the world!  We look forward to seeing how they grow!

Happy chicks out to foster!

Three more of our chicks have been sent out to foster!  Aggie, Cauli, and Adele have a new home for two weeks with the excited patrons pictured here.  The chicks come back on March 28th!  They will look very different by then!

Broadway Gal

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Marley and Sadie off to Foster!

So two of our chicks have gone off to be fostered at their new home for two weeks.  Sadie and Marley have gone to their family, one of whom is pictured here.

The chicks will return on Wednesday, March 28th, so if you didn't get to see them this time around, stop in then and you'll be able to see lots of changes in the chicks!

Our current total is 11 viable chicks.  We are actually thinking that's all we are going to get.  We are disappointed because we were hoping for about twice that many.  Incubator issues are big ones and we've learned a lot this year and are hoping for a much better hatch next year. 

More videos coming soon!

Broadway Gal

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Introducing Sadie!

Introducing Zippy!

Introducing Adele!

Introducing Aggie!

Introducing Marley!

Introducing Toto!

6 New Babies!

Great news this morning!  I had 6 chicks waiting for me in the incubator when I got in this morning!  That brings our total up to 12 chicks that hatched! 

We are also very happy to announce that both Zippy and Tacky hatched!  Hooray!

So, to recap:

1: J24 / Toto
2: J22 / Adele
3: J17 / Aggie
4: J6 / Billy
5: V14 / Marley
6:  V15 / CP2
7:  J15
8:  V8 / Tacky!
9:  V9
10:  J18
11:  V6
12:  V12 / Zippy!

A word to you all though, we seem to have 2 chicks with the dragging sack syndrome.  We don't really expect those two to make it, but they could!  They are hanging out in the incubator. 

The chicks can stay in the incubator for up to 24 hours before getting food and water so we should be okay.  Billy is going to be transferred to the brooder box soon.  I was worried that he would get pecked by the other chicks because he's showing red, but we just got a red heat lamp (thanks Shirley!) and that will help mask his red fluids (see how careful I'm trying to be...I don't want to traumatize any of my young readers!). 

So great news!  I will be posting some videos very shortly!

Monday, March 12, 2012

CP2 Hatches! = V15

V15 hatched!  This is our 6th chick.  V15 will be named by Children's Park so for now this is CP2 (we had CP last year).  Also, I feel compelled to tell you all that Billy the Chick is not doing so hot.  He had a very large sack dragging and after reading, researching, and talking to one of our chicken families, I decided to do an operation.  I know.  So I tied it and cut it off, just like an umbilical cord.  Billy the Chick is now resting in a bowl in the incubator.  We will see how he does.

So, a lot of people wonder why we hatch chicks...of course it fits right in with our mission of life long learning.  Plus it is fascinating and gets a lot of people into the library to check out the chicks.

Here are two pics, one of our littlest patrons and one of some teens.  Everyone likes the chicks!

Marley Hatches!

Enjoy this video of little Marley hatching!

Introducing Adele, Aggie, Billy, and Marley

Adele is actually a tribute to the Children's Librarian who worked here before me, not the current pop singer, and Billy can be any number of characters in Children's Literature (but not Bill Sykes) although he is actually named for Miss Jaymi's Billy.  Aggie...I don't know...Miss Jaymi wanted to name one Aggie.

But the egg-citing thing is that we now have 4...make that 5!  Here is a picture of Aggie:

So the ones that hatched so far are:

1:  J24 / Toto
2:  J22 / Adele
3:  J17 / Aggie
4:  J6 / Billy
5:  V14 / Marley!  (Just hatched at 2:42)

Marley is after Bonita Marley who was the first librarian here.



In this picture if you look at the white egg on the left side of the screen, you can see the hole where the chick is pipping!

Introducing Toto!


Nothing wrong with this baby...he's just so brand new!  He will fluff out soon.  Introducing Toto!

J24 is our first chick out!

So my 2s and 3s class named our first chick!  His name is Toto and we are so excited to have him!
Pictures and videos coming soon!

Hatch Update!

We have 5 eggs pipping!

Day 21! Pipping and Peeping!!!

So, I don't know if we miscalculated or if this is just a fluke, but we weren't expecting any pipping until tomorrow and I have THREE eggs pipping!  Pipping is the process that the chicks use to get out of the egg.  Basically pipping is when you see holes in the eggs and little baby beaks working to try to break the egg open.  Once an egg starts pipping you still have to wait a long time (sometimes several hours) for the chick to break open the shell.

We also have a lot of peeping from chicks that are still inside the shells.  I love this part.  The anticipation!  The anxiety!  The egg-citement! 

You will be hearing from me a lot today! 

It's a great day to be a Chick Lover!

-Broadway Gal

Friday, March 9, 2012

Day 18!!! Only a few more days!

So this is a picture of what our babies are looking like!  They just have four more days in the incubator and then it's off to foster!  I cannot believe how fast this went!  I was very remiss in my blog this time around, but don't worry...once they hatch it will be all chickens all the time!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

100th Post - Day 15 - I'll be your candle in the bathroom!

So, if  you didn't get the reference in the title above, don't be sad.  My sisters would get it.

So, today was our second round of candling and it was great!  In the videos below take a look and see if you can see the veins that are growing around the inside of the eggs.  You can also see the darkness shifting in one of the videos.  This is the chick moving around on the inside of the egg.  It's also fun to listen to us talk. 

I think I mentioned that we take over the boy's bathroom to candle (which we do with flashlights) and today I think there were probably twelve of us in there in a bathroom ideally designed for three. 

While candling, I'm happy to report that Zippy (V12) looked good and that we have a few more names to add to our list:  V7 has become Swimmy (after the Leo Lionni book) and V8 has become Tacky (after the Tacky the Penguin books).  We are aware that this is risky.  We now have our fingers crossed that they all will hatch!


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Day 10 - All about humidity!

We have been having a terrible time regulating the humidity in our incubator.  I think our incubator is a little airy-er than the one we used last year.  Ever since we did our candling thing, we've been struggling to get our humidity to 60%.

We finally taped up some of the holes in the incubator.  Okay, we taped up ALL the holes.

Then we ran a piece of tape along the back.

Then we put a dixie cup of water inside the incubator, because the water we were carefully piping into the troughs kept flowing out the hole on the bottom of the incubator.

So we taped up that hole as well.

Then we ran a piece of tape along one other side.

Finally the humidity is holding steady at 60%.

And guess what has happened to our carefully regulated temperature?  Yup.  It is going up!   This is not good.  Now, we are onto adventures in temperature regulating!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Day 9 - V12 = Zippy!

So, yesterday when we were candling, we had one egg, V12, who was especially active.  We decided to name V12 Zippy!  We know that naming the eggs before they hatch is an especially risky proposition, since there is no guarantee that any of our eggs will hatch, specifically this specific egg, but we are willing to take the risk and will be rooting for Zippy!

Grow Zippy, grow!

We have 40 eggs in our incubator and they are all numbered according to who gave them to us.  Miss Joey's eggs are J1 through J15 and Miss Valerie's eggs are V1-V15.  They are randomly distributed throughout the incubator so they all have an equally good chance of hatching.

Next week we will really ramp up our chick preparation.  Here are things we need to do for sure:

Make and extra brooder box
Purchase MEDICATED chick feed
Purchase one extra feed container
Purchase one extra water container
Purchase more 2 gallon ziplock bags
Check our heat lamp
Bring up the heat lamp holder from the basement

Oh, so much to do!  I can't wait for the chicks!

 - Broadway Gal

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Day 8!!!!!!! Candling Development!!!!!!

Guess what?!  We candled today (more about that process in a second) and we didn't have any eggs that looked terrible!  That is GREAT news!

Our process for candling is pretty easy.  We take a flashlight and tape a toilet paper tube to the top of it (over the light).  We place the eggs one by one (very carefully because there are developing babies in there!) on top of the tube in the dark and this allows the inside of the eggs to light up and glow.  In the picture here, you can see the dark spot on the top of the egg...this is our developing baby chick!  The mass below it, I think is the yolk, which the chick will slowly absorb while it is developing.  This is how it gets all its nutrients.  We were able to see movement, veinage (the growth of veins all around the top half of the eggs) masses and dark spots in almost all of our eggs.  Some of our eggs had darker shells so we couldn't see that well in all of them, but we are feeling much more certain that we WILL have chicks in two weeks. 

I'm SO happy and excited!!!

Happy happy happy!
-Broadway Gal

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Day 5 - Saturday, In the Incubator...I think it was the 25th of February...

Anybody get the reference in this blog post title to an old song?  I love that song.  *sigh*  It's just perfect for sunny Saturdays in the summer.  Unfortunatly today is not a sunny Saturday in the summer.  It's not summer and it's not sunny.  But, it is Saturday!  And we are hatching chicks!  Yay!

Okay, back to the Incubator.  Today is day five.  Here is a picture of what is going on inside this eggs (hopefully). 

On Tuesday when we candle (which by the way is a hilarious process.  There are usually about eight of us and we all take over the men's restroom on the Youth Services side of the library.  We turn all the lights off and use the flashlight to see inside each egg.  If any unsuspecting men come into the restroom we usually scare them out of their wits.) we will be looking for eyespots, masses, and veins.  Veins especially.  Keep your fingers crossed! 

I try not to think about what to name our chicks until after the first candling, but I just can't help myself.  Here is a recap of what we named the chicks last year.  And remember, last year we had a great hatch:

Huck *
Alan Rickbird
Viola *
Rocky *
Diane *

So, we had 31 hatch and the ones with the * all unfortunately died, leaving us with 27 viable chicks.  It was a great hatch last year.   I think we may have to name one of our chicks this year Cauli.  I mean how could we not?

Have your read Cauli's blog?  You can find it here!  Cauli's Blog

Till next time! 

Broadway Gal

Picture taken from the book:  Egg to Chick by Millicent E. Selsam.  Pictures by Barbara Wolff.  Published by Harper and Row, copyright 1970.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Day 3 - What is going on inside this egg?

So this is a picture of what COULD be going on inside each of our eggs.  See the tiny eye-spot that is starting to develop?  This is just day three but already our eggs have somehow made the decision (based on how conducive our climate is and whether or not they were fertilized) to develop or not.  Once we candle, we will have a much better idea if our eggs are on the right track.

You might ask, where did our eggs come from?  If I put the eggs in my refrigerator into an incubator and turn them very frequently and give them the right amount of moisture, would those eggs hatch into chicks in 21 days?  The answer would be NO.  Our eggs came from two local families who have lots of chickens...specifically hens (the females who lay the eggs) and roosters.  In the interest of our younger patrons let me just say that you have to have hens and roosters in order to have eggs that will turn into baby chicks.

We have 40 fertilized eggs and we are hoping for at least a 50% hatch.  We'd really like more than that and that's why we are watching our temperature and our humidity so carefully! 

I can't wait!!!
 - Broadway Gal

Picture from the book Egg to Chicken by Camilla De la Bedoyere, published by QEB Publishers in 2009. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Day 2-Always with the 99.5 Degrees!

So, this is pretty much all I'm thinking about in regards to the chicks...are they at 99.5 degrees? Are they at 55 percent humidity? How are they doing? Do we have growth? I'm driving myself crazy wondering! I will get some relief next week when we candle the eggs (which we actually do with a flashlight) but until then I will be pretty paranoid about the eggs.

This morning didn't help. The power at the library was off for 10 minutes (meaning no electricity in our incubator) but I think everything will be fine...oh! I can't wait to candle to find out if we have growth!

Yours in evident impatience,
Broadway Gal

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Time to do the Chicken Dance!

It's today!  It's today!  Today is the day we get the eggs for the 2012 Chick Hatch at the Mooresville Public Library!  This is Broadway Gal, here to keep you abreast of all the Chick Happenings! 
To be honest, we aren't as ready this year as we were last year.  This is probably due to the fact that we had a great hatch last year and so now we are getting lax in our preparations.  I do have the following done:

Incubator up from the basement - check
Incubator cleaned - check
Incubator set at 99.5 degrees - check

But I still have a lot to do:
  • Bench behind window
  • Pull books on chickens and eggs (which should I pull first, I wonder?)
  • Put up Chick Development Poster
  • Print out posters
  • Print out Chick Packets
And of course, today we will be very busy!  Today we have to install the egg turner in the incubator (ours is a little shady, so we will be borrowing Chicken Lady's), also install the humidity measuring device (can't remember what this is actually called...a hydrometer?  Must read all blog posts from last year!!), and number all eggs and place in incubator.  I was thinking that we need to do the descriptions of each egg (no...not all eggs are white!) but we will do that next week when we candle for the first time. 

I'm super egg-cited.  Wild Thang is ready to have it all over with already!  I love this video.  Love the numa numa song and basically it's how I feel about the chicks.  Can't wait till they start hatching!!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

New pics of some chicks!

Here are some pictures of four of our chicks getting big!  They are from the top down:  Sawyer, Sunny, Sawyer again, Pippin, and Rosa.  Yay chicks!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Harper and Samuel Update!

I have received this update about Samuel and Harper and am so happy to share it with you all!  "Harper and Samuel are getting sooooo big. :)  They have little tail feathers now and we're pretty sure their feet are growing by the hour.  Samuel likes to stand up very tall stretching his neck like a Giraffe.  Harper is more relaxed of the two chicks and is most definitely the lead singer of this duet!"  Harper is the yellow one and Samuel is the darker one.  Thanks SO much for the update!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A Gift From Cauli

I guess Cauli heard that I'm rather sad because the chicks aren't here anymore.  He brought me this cute little stuffed duckling baby chick!  How sweet of him to see this little duckling baby chick and think of us over here in the Youth Department. 

I can't speak for all of us about being sad (next time you see her, be sure to ask Wild Thang how she feels now that the chicks are gone) but for me personally, this week sort of feels like the week following Christmas.

However, we do have April 25th to look forward to!  Shirley, Samuel, Pollyanna, Dillinger, Rose, Raphael, Jaymi, Harper, Heidi, and Bonita will all be back from fostering that day.  If you'd like to see them, be sure to call before you come, because they will only be here a short while!  I'll take more videos and pictures of them at that time.  They will look very different from when they left us!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Raphael and Huck

Here are some updated pics of Huck and Raphael.  We are so sad that Huck passed away!  However, this is a natural part of raising chicks.  We had SO many hatch.  They say you can lose about 15% of your hatch.  We've lost Huck, Viola, Rocky, and Diane.  That is just about 15%.  I hope we don't lose any more!  Raphael is doing great and is looking forward to haviing Bonita to play with.

Bonita getting big!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Samuel and Harper Update!

Here's an update from the family who are fostering Harper and Samuel!  Such CUTE pictures!
"Just letting you know that Harper and Samuel are doing great.  Feathers are starting to come in on both chicks too.  My daughter has been a excellent helper and is checking on them very often.  So far so good.  I'll update you again soon."
Thanks so much for the update! 

A Visit to the Farm

Well, I dropped the incubator off at the farm yesterday. A5 was there, hatched and breathing, but I received word not long after that that the sweet little blond chick had died. It seems that the later they hatch, the less likely they are to live and hatching yesterday was a very late hatch.

While I was there I got to visit Jeannie (the little black chick). She is doing well and is getting acclimated to her new home with lots of other chicks and chickens. The pretty rooster pictured here is actually one of the chicks we hatched last year! Amazing! He could actually be the daddy of some of the chicks we hatched this year! Oh, the amazing circle of life.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Last post of the evening...

Well, your A5 update is a short one.  I have no idea what is going on with that chick.  If I lived closer I'd probably drive to Mooresville and find out, but being as I'm in here Indy, it will have to wait for tomorrow.  I have to be in Martinsville tomorrow though (our Teen and Tween Councils won 2,000 in grant money from Youth As Resources, a United Way organization and they are getting their checks tomorrow) so I will stop by the library and take a look to see what A5 is doing.  Either way, we've had a very positive hatch.  Since we cracked three eggs after week one, really we were only setting 38 eggs.  28 viable eggs out of 38 that we were setting gives us a hatch rate of 74%.  Really really great!

Volia and Rocky

Well, Rocky is not the only chick who passed away.  Viola also passed away.  She went home with one of our farm families and I just received word this morning that she is gone.  She was small but we thought she was fine.  If you watch her video you can see she looked pretty good.  Maybe less perky than the others...I guess with so many eggs that hatched we are bound to lose a couple.  At least Rocky isn't alone. 


Just called the library...A5 is still moving and there is progress on the hole.

Update on A5!

A5 is peeping and moving, but not a lot of progress on the hole in the egg...more as soon as I have something to report. 

Notes for Next Year...

So, it is Saturday morning and I'm here in bed thinking about the chicks. Whenever we do something major at the library, I like to reflect on it afterwards to see what I would have done differently or what I can change for next year...I have a few notes. First of all (and this is slightly unpleasant...) many of our chicks hatched with bloody belly buttons. I read that this means our incubator was too hot. It is really difficult to regulate the incubator, and we felt pretty good about it this whole hatch, but maybe we should be just a half or quarter a degree cooler next year. Also, I really need to totally clear my schedule the week of the chick hatch. Let's be realistic...we got NOTHING done this week except for hanging out with the chicks. We should also keep a tally for patrons who come to the library just to see the chicks for statistical purposes. We are also considering buying our own incubator. With two, we could do the hatch in one and then transfer over to the other after the hatch. This might cut down on the amount of bacteria in the second incubator. (Out incubator is disgusting after hatching 30 chicks.) More things to buy include another whole brooder box as well as another food and water container. This will make the last day easier and will give us replacements as the others wear out, break, or melt.

I am going to call work in half an hour to see the fate of our peeping egg...I am anxious to see the results of our late A5!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Chicks off to their final destination!

The above is the last video of the chicks for now!  They have all gone off to their friendly farm home.  These chicks include:  Bonita, Gilbert, Elphaba, Helen, Alan Rickbird, Ryuzaki, Charlotte, Estelle, Billina, Francie, Olivia, Ian, and Malcolm.  They also took Viola, but she is not in this video.  Our sad news is that Rocky didn't make it.  We are very sad about this.  He labored in his breathing and lived just under 24 hours, but he did pass away. 

The exciting news is that the incubator is still here!  We have one egg (A5 / Diane!) who is peeping in the shell.  This is very late in the process and we don't really know what will happen.  I will be sure to give you all an update in the morning!

Thanks for reading!  We hope to have more updates from our families soon! 

Families: if you want to update this blog just send your comments and pictures to me at:

Love, Broadway Gal

5 more off to foster!

Five of our chicks are being fostered by a farm family.  Rosa, Sunny, Sawyer, Jeannie, and Pippin are all off to foster!  Best of luck to them!  The picture below of the striped chick is actually Huck.  We somehow missed Sawyer in all the chaos yesterday.  Just picture Huck only with more brown and you've got Sawyer!

Rose and Pollyanna off to foster!

Rose and Pollyanna went off to their foster family yesterday.  They were both pretty squirmy!

Some development...

 Here are Helen and Bonita...two of our birds that hatched out early on Tuesday.  It is only Friday and they are already starting to look like chickens!

If you look carefully at their wings, you might be able to see their FEATHERS coming in already!  Our brooder box has been very active with birds stretching their wings and showing their prowess at climbing on the food trough!