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Transition to coop

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hey all!
Question...
When I transition my chicks to the coop should I have little nesting boxes already set up for them?
Straw? Pine shavings? Blanket?
Any and all advice greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 9

It depends on what age they are when you transition they in.  If they are still young (not of laying age) I would not put nesting boxes in, wait until just before they start laying.  You do not want they to get in the habit of roosting in them.  As far as shavings, blanket,ect. it is what ever you prefer.   Shaving and straw are easier to clean and replace not to mention cheaper.

I live in Northeastern New Mexico. Live on a 2.5 acres with my husband of 38 yrs.(husband pass away 6/13/16), 2 dogs, 2 cats,    I have SLC, Blue laced Red Wy, Partridge Cochin, Blue, Black & White Cochins, Americanas, Cuckoo Marans Roo, Dominque Roo,  Blue Bar Roo, Buff Orps, Lavender Wy, Black & Blue French Cooper Marans, French Wheaton Marans, Cuckoo Marans , Dominque , Blue bar  Whiting...

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I live in Northeastern New Mexico. Live on a 2.5 acres with my husband of 38 yrs.(husband pass away 6/13/16), 2 dogs, 2 cats,    I have SLC, Blue laced Red Wy, Partridge Cochin, Blue, Black & White Cochins, Americanas, Cuckoo Marans Roo, Dominque Roo,  Blue Bar Roo, Buff Orps, Lavender Wy, Black & Blue French Cooper Marans, French Wheaton Marans, Cuckoo Marans , Dominque , Blue bar  Whiting...

Reply
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Choco Maran View Post

It depends on what age they are when you transition they in.  If they are still young (not of laying age) I would not put nesting boxes in, wait until just before they start laying.  You do not want they to get in the habit of roosting in them.  As far as shavings, blanket,ect. it is what ever you prefer.   Shaving and straw are easier to clean and replace not to mention cheaper.
Thank you for your response, Choco.
I plan on transitioning them around 6 weeks. They are a little over 2 now and spend ample time outside already but still sleep inside under lamp. I have NO idea if they are boys or girls.
If one (or both) are females, how would I know when they are just about ready to lay? (What's laying age?)
Thanks for any and all thoughts, ideas, advice...
Edited by BirdsInParadise - 5/23/16 at 4:58pm
post #4 of 9

Laying age is about 16-20 weeks.  You will know they are close when they start to squat down when you go to pet them.  I change to layer feed at about 6 weeks.  I will stay on grower untill then.   Start grower after each chick has finished about a pound of starter per chick.  A chick will eat about a pound of food a week.    

I live in Northeastern New Mexico. Live on a 2.5 acres with my husband of 38 yrs.(husband pass away 6/13/16), 2 dogs, 2 cats,    I have SLC, Blue laced Red Wy, Partridge Cochin, Blue, Black & White Cochins, Americanas, Cuckoo Marans Roo, Dominque Roo,  Blue Bar Roo, Buff Orps, Lavender Wy, Black & Blue French Cooper Marans, French Wheaton Marans, Cuckoo Marans , Dominque , Blue bar  Whiting...

Reply

I live in Northeastern New Mexico. Live on a 2.5 acres with my husband of 38 yrs.(husband pass away 6/13/16), 2 dogs, 2 cats,    I have SLC, Blue laced Red Wy, Partridge Cochin, Blue, Black & White Cochins, Americanas, Cuckoo Marans Roo, Dominque Roo,  Blue Bar Roo, Buff Orps, Lavender Wy, Black & Blue French Cooper Marans, French Wheaton Marans, Cuckoo Marans , Dominque , Blue bar  Whiting...

Reply
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Choco Maran View Post

Laying age is about 16-20 weeks.  You will know they are close when they start to squat down when you go to pet them.  I change to layer feed at about 6 weeks.  I will stay on grower untill then.   Start grower after each chick has finished about a pound of starter per chick.  A chick will eat about a pound of food a week.    
I'm currently feeding them Purina medicated start and grow. I was under the impression that they should consume this for 2 months.
Does that sound correct?
Is "layer food" what I should ask for at the feed store?

Any ideas on sexing these critters?
They're Silkies, BTW.
THANKS!!!
post #6 of 9

At 6 weeks they are way too young for layer feed. The high calcium content of layer feed can cause organ damage that may not be apparent, but happening nonetheless. When the chicks are about 6-8 weeks old, you can switch to a grower/finisher feed and when they start laying, switch to a layer feed, which is formulated for active laying hens.

 

@BirdsInParadise here are some Silkie sexing threads with tips and pics:

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/579215/silkie-sexing/0_30

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/882746/sexing-silkies/0_30

 

“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” 

 

~ Shel Silverstein
 

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“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” 

 

~ Shel Silverstein
 

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post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sumi View Post

At 6 weeks they are way too young for layer feed. The high calcium content of layer feed can cause organ damage that may not be apparent, but happening nonetheless. When the chicks are about 6-8 weeks old, you can switch to a grower/finisher feed and when they start laying, switch to a layer feed, which is formulated for active laying hens.

@BirdsInParadise
 here are some Silkie sexing threads with tips and pics:

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/579215/silkie-sexing/0_30

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/882746/sexing-silkies/0_30
Thanks for the added info and links, Sumi.
Greatly appreciated.
Edit: what exactly is a "waddle" and "comb"?
Edited by BirdsInParadise - 5/24/16 at 10:34am
post #8 of 9

To put it very simply, the comb is found on top of the chicken's head (males generally have larger combs than females) and the wattles are hanging down below the chicken's beak. In most breeds the comb and wattles will be red, or reddish coloured. Here is a diagram of the chicken, male and female's anatomy:

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/chicken-diagram-and-anatomy-of-a-chicken-pictures-and-labels

 

And just for fun, the different comb types:

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/the-9-comb-types

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/caruncles-combs-and-wattles-the-features-functions-and-healthcare

 

“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” 

 

~ Shel Silverstein
 

Reply

 

“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” 

 

~ Shel Silverstein
 

Reply
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sumi View Post

To put it very simply, the comb is found on top of the chicken's head (males generally have larger combs than females) and the wattles are hanging down below the chicken's beak. In most breeds the comb and wattles will be red, or reddish coloured. Here is a diagram of the chicken, male and female's anatomy:

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/chicken-diagram-and-anatomy-of-a-chicken-pictures-and-labels

And just for fun, the different comb types:

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/the-9-comb-types
http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/caruncles-combs-and-wattles-the-features-functions-and-healthcare
I see.
Thank you!
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