Tonight I found this forum while researching and wow am I glad there's such a great resource right here.
Today is Day 1 of our life with chickens. We brought home 9-day old chicks - 10 Silver Laced Wyandottes and 10 Rhode Island Reds - and 5 one-month old broilers. They were so calm this afternoon and then suddenly a few of the Rhode Islands turned escape artist! I put netting over the brooder so everyone is safely tucked in for the night. After 45 minutes of *singing*, they're all quiet. I cannot explain how excited I am to have started our flock!
I have questions about the broilers: They are ultra mellow - four of them have been eating a bit but the fifth, not yet. They seem lethargic or bored or something, a dramatic contrast to the other 20. Is that common? At how many weeks should we begin pasturing them? We plan to use a tractor-style coop since there are lots of hawks in our area. They're still so little.