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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Yellow is for Chicks


I was enjoying lunch with a friend recently when this mother peahen and her baby chicks wandered nearby on the grounds just outside the window.



Seeing these baby peachicks was a new experience for me, so I quickly grabbed my camera and went outside to get some photos. Peachicks hatch from eggs that are about 3 times the size of a chicken egg, but smaller than a goose egg. Their feathers are yellow with touches of brown, and their legs are long.




Peafowl can refer to two species of birds: the Indian Peafowl from India and the Green Peafowl from Burma east to Java. The male peafowl is known as a peacock. This guy is an Indian Peafowl identified by his magnificent iridescent blue-green plumage.



The tail of the peacock is actually elongated covert feathers that cover the tail feathers. They have a series of "eyes" that are best seen when the tail is fanned. The peacock struts and fans his colorful plumage to attract the female.



The female Indian Peafowl is very different in appearance from her mate. Her feathers are dull brown or grey. Though she has a crest, she does not have the long showy upper tail coverts.



Peafowls nest on the ground, but roost in trees. These birds are omnivorous. They eat plants, insects, reptiles, and amphibians. The mother peahen will teach her chicks how to find food, which is likely what she was doing this day .




Upset with my presence, this mother peahen was very protective of her chicks and didn't like me getting close.



She fussed at me and then quickly turned to take her chicks elsewhere.



As a retired elementary teacher, children's literature has long been one of my true loves. I used to spend Sunday afternoons at favorite book stores looking through the children's section. These three picture books are not new, but rather favorites that I read time and again to my students. JUST PLAIN & FANCY by Patricia Polacco is a heart warming story of two young Amish sisters who find an unusual egg. They place the egg with their hens to be hatched and soon find this is no ordinary chick. It is a story of the plain ways of the Amish and the beauty of God's creatures. Mem Fox's FEATHERS & FOOLS is an allegorical tale of war between a "pride of magnificent peacocks" and "a flock of elegant swans." In the end no birds remain alive, though two eggs survive. Once hatched, the little peachick and cygnet recognize they are more alike than different. The two become friends, and "They went together, in peace and unafraid, to face the day and share the world." This story offers an excellent antiwar message. THE SPOOKY TAIL OF PREWITT PEACOCK by Bill Peet was written in the early 70s, but the storyline of being different continues to provide young children with a marvelous example. Bill Peet is a master storyteller.



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54 comments:

  1. oh these are beautiful photos ... how wonderful to get a chance to be so close to the chicks! wonderful yellow post ... i haven started mine yet ...

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  2. Great photos of those adorable chicks, I'm surprised you could get as close as you did! A much truer yellow post than mine :-)

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  3. Sarah!!! Your posts always delight me and conjure up my own little world of memories! Such beauties..I'd love to play with them all..they are such beautiful creatures! very cool about all those interesting books..! Beautiful photos! I also just read about your celebration post..yay congrats....how wonderful is that..i love the story behind it!
    as always..yu charm the soul..hope you are having a lovely week! have a sparkling day..and thanks for all the beautiful posts you create!
    Kiki~

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  4. Sarah- this is a lovely post and it reminds me of how wonderful simple gifts of nature are.
    Thank you too for your wonderful visits to my blog-

    Laura
    White Spray Paint

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  5. Such soft little bundles to turn into such stately creatures! I'm glad you had your camera with you!
    We still have nine little ducklings by the pond and they are beginning to lose their baby look. Every morning I go out and count and then breath a sigh of relief that they're all there!

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  6. Sarah,
    What a wonderful post. I looked at the first picture and said "oh, my" out loud. Your picture was perfect. Your post is educational. I really enjoyed reading & looking at everything you had to share. I feel like I "learnt" something today. Thanks so much for adding to my day.

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  7. Sarah you little chicks are adorable, sadly there has been no sign of our moorhens baby for some time now.
    As you will have realised it's always a good thing to have your camera with you wherever you go, I've found the best shadow shots that way.

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  8. Testing...Tried twice with a long comment and it wouldn't post!

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  9. I am so glad I found your blog. I am hosting a jewelry giveaway and would love for you to stop by.Take care Anu!!

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  10. learned something new today!

    they look a lot like guinea fowl, huh? sweet!

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  11. What beautiful photos you got for us. Aren't these little creatures just precious.

    Thank you for posting the button on your sidebar. My, we do have a lot of giveaways. CSN found a great way to advertise, I would say.

    Good luck..
    xo bj

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  12. Proud as a peacock...that is one saying I always understood. Beautiful pictures.

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  13. What an opportunity you came across! The chicks are so cute.

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  14. Sarah, what a very informative post about peafowl. I did not even know they were called that. I only knew of peacocks. Great photos.

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  15. very informative! I'm an elementary school teacher, so I particularly loved the info about the books!

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  16. How cute those little chicks are. This was a very interesting post. I thought all peacocks/peafowls (never knew they were called this) looked the same lol. I love that I learn things all the time from Alphabe-Thursday.

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  17. great photos and I love the info about pea fowl. My favorite Patricia Polacco books are Pink and Say and Thank ou, Mr. Falkner. All of her stories are wonderful....thanks for the great posts, love to "pick your brain".

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  18. Awe what adorable peachicks! I too love childrens literature - I have hundreds of books. I have read Just Plain and Fancy to my own children many years ago! Great post!

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  19. Hi Sarah
    This was such an interesting post! I've seen peacocks but I never saw a peahen or her chicks before. They are beautiful looking fowl and it was nice to learn more about them.

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  20. Those chicks were just too cute!

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  21. I always learn so many things when I visit you Sarah. I had no idea that a peahen even existed. Thanks so much for teaching me something new today!

    Best wishes always,
    Natasha.

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  22. It never fails to register with me how the male of the species is always so much more beautiful than the female. Never so true as with peacocks. Great post!

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  23. You're such a great teacher, Sarah! I learn something every time I come to your blog!!
    Glad you carry your camera with you everywhere, too. I'm keeping my old one in the car for just such an event.

    I will look for the book JUST PLAIN & FANCY as it sounds like one Ms. C. would enjoy. Thanks for the tip!

    fondly,
    Rett

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  24. Those chicks are just so cute! Great post!

    Have a great weekend too,

    LOLA:)

    PS Mine this time is OVER HERE! Hope you can stop by.
    ……………………………………………………………………………………………………..

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  25. Those chicks are just so cute! Great post!

    Have a great weekend too,

    LOLA:)

    PS Mine this time is OVER HERE! Hope you can stop by.
    ……………………………………………………………………………………………………..

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  26. Those chicks are just so cute! Great post!

    Have a great weekend too,

    LOLA:)

    PS Mine this time is OVER HERE! Hope you can stop by.
    ……………………………………………………………………………………………………..

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  27. I rally enjoyed this wonderful post, Sarah. You probably know I love peahens,peacocks and the chicks of course. I have never seen chicks before. In fact, I just bought an oil painting of a peacock and peahen and just have not framed it yet......Christine

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  28. Those chicks are pretty appealing!

    =)

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  29. Spectacular photos! Mothers are the same no matter the species.

    Best,
    Bonnie

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  30. I absolutely loved every inch of this post. I learned so much and enjoyed these photos. Thanks for letting us into this amazing day you had.

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  31. Lovely - never seen a peachick before!

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  32. My daughter is often offended by the fact that the males are the "pretty" ones. Haha. How lucky you were to capture nature like that. At least until Mama got mad.

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  33. Love those little chicks. We have a male living near us and even though the road is 45 mph he often goes across the road strutting his stuff and not caring that he might be hit. Haven't read those books, but I do love Patricia Pollaco books. Joni

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  34. i am so loving this post! those pictures are spectacular! and the books look amazing!

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  35. I am so glad that you visited my blog post of Antique French Linens today, so that I could find you here. What a great post, I especially love the book mentions. xo Lidy

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  36. What good information on Peacocks and Peahens. I also will check out the books for my gkids. They sound awesome. Happy Yellow Thursday!

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  37. Gorgeous critters! I love these little fuzzy things..

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  38. What a wonderful Alphabe-Thursday Rainbow Summer School link!

    I love these pictures and your accompanying story made me feel like I was there.

    I am quite intriqued with the book about the Amish girls. I am going to order that for my Grands!

    Thank you for linking!

    This was certainly an interesting post.

    A+

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  39. What a wonderful sight! I'm so glad you had your camera and shared your photos with us. A first for me too!

    Nancy

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  40. Those chicks are just adorable. Glad that mamma peahen let you get a few shots before she took them away. The books sound wonderful, I'll have to look for them for my younger niece. Do you know if they are still in print? If not, I guess I'll have to FORCE myself to go to Half Price Books :)

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  41. Just lovely, I have never seen or heard of one before...so I learned something today...thank you for sharing...bkm

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  42. oh my goodness...so cute! i also appreciate the lesson on peahens and peacocks...very interesting

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  43. What great pictures and info you have here. Very interesting!
    Lindy

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  44. You are truly amazing and I love reading your posts. I, too, am a retired elementary school teacher who loves children's literature. However, I've never read the books you mentioned in your blog! Thanks so much for the wonderful information about peacocks and the other birds you mentioned this week.

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  45. Oh the little chics are just so cute. Great pictures.
    Thanks so much for your sweet birthday wishes. I really appreciate it. I felt really spoiled. lol Hugs, Marty

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  46. It's amasing how beautiful and varied birds can be.

    - The Tablescaper

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  47. The peachicks are adorable and very sweet. There are quite a few different types of peafowl. I have one hen that is white. The hen in your pictures looks like a pied.

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  48. What a good blogger - to have your camera with you and to jump up during lunch to capture these wonderful photos. Those little chicks are so cute! I love children's books, and the ones you've shown look and sound so charming and full of wisdom. laurie

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  49. I love the peahen with her crest she looks like a queen. Awww lovely chicks
    thank you for sharing, I had never seen a peahen before

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  50. Oh! Thank you for sharing these photos and the info. I think the mama looks so pretty too, even without the amazing feathers of her male counterpart. And it is amazing to see her little chicks look so like the chicks of a chicken.

    Blessings & Aloha!
    (finally getting a chance to stop by, thank you for your comments on my yellow post :o) I am happy that you enjoy the drawings that I do. )

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Thank you to each of you who take the time to leave a comment. I read and appreciate each and every one and will respond to any questions. Your notes are the only way I know who has stopped in for a visit.

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