4-H animal science programs provide members with the opportunity to gain life skills that they will carry into their future. Though the world around us is evolving, the importance of agriculture education is still an emerging need. The pandemic created an opportunity to offer innovated virtual programming.
The Adopt-A-Chick program was designed to give 4-H’ers the opportunity to participate in an integrated virtual or in-person and hands-on animal science program. Members adopted a chick from the time it was an egg until it hatched. Once hatched, participants are given the option to take the chick home. They can select laying hens and/or meat-production birds. Participants who select meat-production birds will be processing those birds in May with Dr. Joe Moritz, WVU Extension Poultry Specialist.
During this six-week program participants learned:
- About the incubation process
- Egg anatomy
- Bird breeds and anatomy
- The different uses for poultry
- How to properly care for their new chicks
This program solidified the need for innovative programming to reach diverse audiences. It was made available in Barbour, Randolph, Tucker and Upshur Counties. Adopt-A-Chick was live streamed for participants to watch the last phase of the incubation process.