DOUGLAS COUNTY, Colo. (CBS4)– For the second year in a row, Colorado State University Extension in Douglas County is sharing its “Chick Cam” with the world. The 24/7 live stream of hatching chicks is not only fascinating to watch, those running it hope it will also peak some interest when it comes to sustainable living.

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“The Chick Cam teaches people you can actually raise animals is your backyard. In addition it helps kids learn how to do feeding, taking care of, it’s not just a cute thing,” said Christy Vanbibber with Douglas County.

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Vanbibber is Superintendent of Poultry and 4-H leader for the Douglas County Fair and Rodeo.

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She specifically hopes the “Chick Cam” has an impact on Colorado youth. She wants to spread the word, you don’t have to come from a farming family to dive into 4-H. It’s all part of the Poultry Project, which teaches youth about responsibility in agriculture starting with chickens.

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“What we do is teach them to be leaders. We don’t tell ‘em what to do, we try to advise them.”

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The “Chick Cam” started as an outreach project to showcase CSU Extension programs in Douglas County.

(credit: Colorado State University Extension)

“We added several educational pieces including videos on incubators, chick development cycle, how the incubator acts as a hen, and candling. We wanted to promote the education opportunities CSU Extension provides communities and use technology to promote our school embryology program that we have in place in Douglas County,” said Claudia Meeks, a 4-H Youth Development Agent with Douglas County Extension.

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CBS4 had the chance to see the incubators as the chicks began to hatch Wednesday.

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“They’re easier to take care of a dog or a cat or anything like that and they give you food,” said Ethan Summervill.

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Summervill, 16, is the Vice President of the Douglas County 4-H Council. Despite not growing up on a farm, he knows all about raising livestock. He started by convincing his mother to get some chickens.

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“The chickens even though they seem like an easy project, they’re really just kind of a seed for me and what got me started in agriculture,” said Summervill.

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It’s the foundation of the 4-H Poultry Project. While the Poultry Project is geared toward 4-H, CSU Extension offers many educational opportunities across Colorado.

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This summer, Douglas County will host a backyard chicken workshop for all ages. Those interested are advised to contact douglas.extension.colostate.edu.

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CSU Extension anticipates the chicks will be hatching April 17-19. It continue 24/7 live streaming through Monday, April 22. There are 30 eggs in two incubators with various breeds set to hatch live.

Jamie Leary

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