Although we were in sub-zero temperatures earlier this past week, we are all looking forward to spring on the calendar. And as if in answer to our pleas, the thermometer has been getting into the 30’s and 40’s the past few days. Sure signs of spring in Minnesota are puddles of water from all the melting snow, as well as people outside in their shorts and short sleeves. Granted, to most people 40 degrees doesn’t warrant shorts, but for us the temps are 50 degrees warmer than what it has been — a grand reason to celebrate. To me, another sure sign of spring are chicks, and in this case, baby chicks less than a day old! Through the generosity of some great new friends, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to photograph a group of silkie white bantam chicks that had hatched within the past day. Silkie chickens are unusual in that they have dark blue flesh and bones, and they have five toes on each foot whereas most chickens have four. What an amazing group of little birds! They would be up hopping and walking around chirping, and then be fast asleep all huddled together under a heat lamp. The little chick being held in this photo has a look of determination in his eye. In his short life he’s already pecked his way out of his egg, has gotten his feet working, has dried out all his feathers (and had them fluffed up thanks to the humans watching over him), and is ready to get on with his life. In no time he’ll grow into a full white pompadour of hair on his head.