The chicks are a week old now! Everyday brought some sort of change:
Day 1-Sat the 17th, Ginger didn’t get off the nest at all.
Day 2-Ginger moved her nesting spot about 12 inches for part of the day and then went back to the nest, but the babies ranged as far as 5 or 6 inches from mama.
Day 3-Ginger explored the coop a few times that day. The babies ranged a bit farther from mama.
Day 4-Ginger took them outside the coop for a very brief time. I don’t know how they got out, but the babies had trouble going up the ramp (it’s not a natural chicken instinct). So I helped the littlest ones.
Day 5-Ginger was all over the coop, scratching up the litter and eating the ants that like to travel though it. As far as I know she didn’t go outside though.
Day 6-Mama and babies had a fairly decent amount of time in the chicken run. I came home from work to find two of them on the wrong side of the fence from mama. A little help from me rectified that.
Day 7-I came home early from work and Ginger and her clutch were out in the chicken yard! It was awesome to watch. Later in the evening they managed to escape the fence and were out in the deep grass of the backyard. I sat and watch for a good long while! As evening approached I had to pick mama up and put her over the fence while the babes just went through it.
Day 8-Sat the 24th, as soon as I opened the chicken door Ginger went through it. The clutch didn’t follow so she went back in. Once she had their attention she went back down the ramp into the run. The babies didn’t take the ramp at all. Instead they chose to just jump right off. It’s a good 16-18 inch drop, which for a chick that can fit through 1 inch by 1 inch fence is a VERY long way down. They don’t have any flight feathers yet so I worried that they would injure their legs or toes, but all seemed well. Mama immediately took them to the water and then out into the fenced in yard. It’s 6 hours later and they are still outside scratching and pecking!