1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

A couple questions from a first timer

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by FarminTheBurbs, Jan 31, 2012.

  1. FarminTheBurbs

    FarminTheBurbs New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Jan 31, 2012
    SF Peninsula, CA
    Hi all! I'm new to BYC and I just ordered 6 chicks from MyPetChicken: 1 Black Australorp, 1 Silver Laced Wyandotte, 1 Blue Laced Red Wyandotte, 1 Buff Brahma and 2 Blue (hopefully!) Andalusians. They won't be shipping for a couple of months (due to some of the breeds availability) so I've got plenty of time to build a super-coop for my new buddies! I have a couple of questions to pose to you:
    1. What are your opinions on medicated feed for the babies? Pros and cons?
    2. I am planning on a nipple watering system for the coop/run. How early should I introduce the chicks to a nipple system?
    3. What are your thoughts on brooder light? Should I use a regular bulb or a red bulb? Does it make much difference?
    Thank you for your thoughts! I love BYC and have already found so much great advice here! [​IMG]
     
  2. P'Fowls

    P'Fowls Out Of The Brooder

    77
    0
    29
    Mar 2, 2011
    Dahlonega, Ga
    1. I would recommend using medicated starter. It helps control coccidiosis when they are young. I have always used it and have had good luck raising chicks. There is also a double medicated out now by Purina.

    2. I would personally start them on the nipples when they come out of the brooder around 4-5 weeks old. Thats just my opinion, you could probably do it sooner or later if you like.

    3. I personally prefer a red brooder light. I have used them all and found that the red ones keep the chicks calmer than the clear ones. I also currently have a brooder setup with regular 60w light bulbs and the chicks do fine in it. So its really which you prefer. The way regular bulbs are made now a days, the red heat lamps last longer. I have dimmer switches on my red bulbs to control the heat.


    Again, this is just my opinions on what works or has worked for my in the past. I cant guarentee you that you wont lose any chicks doing it either way.
     
  3. ailurophile23

    ailurophile23 Chillin' With My Peeps

    492
    14
    111
    Dec 21, 2010
    VA

    X2!
     
  4. FarminTheBurbs

    FarminTheBurbs New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Jan 31, 2012
    SF Peninsula, CA
    Thanks for the info!
     
  5. [​IMG]and i just use organic chick starter from the farm stores and i would use just a regular waterer, one that dispenses as they drink. i have not tried a nipple waterer or do i know what it is. we use just a regular light, but the stores use a red bulb.
    have fun with your chicks! i get some this thursday and I'm really excited!
    and btw p'fowls, thanks for the red bulb info, I'm gonna use it instead this batch and see how they do.
     
  6. FarminTheBurbs

    FarminTheBurbs New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Jan 31, 2012
    SF Peninsula, CA
    Thanks for your advice! This site has a couple of examples nipple watering systems: http://www.avianaquamiser.com/ . There are also quite a few threads here on BYC about them as well. I will be making my own gravity fed system to go in the run. It seems like a great idea, but I was figuring on waiting until the chicks were a few weeks old to start introducing them to it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2012
  7. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

    5,427
    704
    306
    Jan 20, 2011
    middle TN
    I started my chicks on a nipple waterer as soon as I brought them home. They ranged in age from 3 days to 3 weeks so I put a scrap of 2x4 under one nipple so the smaller ones could reach. Once they saw that shiny lever hanging down, they were sold on trying it out. I did put a regular waterer in there also in case it took them a while. But in that first hour, I saw every chick make use of the nipple so I pulled the other water out and didn't look back. A dry brooder is a happy place -- I'd absolutely go that route again.

    OH, and I used one of those gallon ice cream pails in the brooder with two nipples (because of the size variance). Really only needed one for the number of chicks but there's a good bit of height difference with a 3-week Welsummer and a 3-day Speckled Sussex. More pluses: no risk of drowning or poopy, shavings-filled waterer to clean out...
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2012
  8. FarminTheBurbs

    FarminTheBurbs New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Jan 31, 2012
    SF Peninsula, CA
    Okay, I'm convinced! I'm gonna give the nipples a go when the chicks arrive. No drowning, no nasty water, dry brooder...I'm sold! Thanks!
     
  9. P'Fowls

    P'Fowls Out Of The Brooder

    77
    0
    29
    Mar 2, 2011
    Dahlonega, Ga

    All of my dealers tell me that the red bulbs produces infrared rays that help keep bacteria down. I cant guarentee that though. I can say that they helps our chicks feel better. The red bulbs are also suppose to mimic night time in the chicks eyes, which is part of keeping them calmer. But I dont see how.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2012
  10. FarminTheBurbs

    FarminTheBurbs New Egg

    8
    0
    7
    Jan 31, 2012
    SF Peninsula, CA
    Wow! Now you have me curious about the anti-bacterial effect of the red light! I know with reptiles, there are red-painted bulbs and red heat lamps. I believe the heat lamps produce infrared light while the red bulbs just cut the visible light (I'm not 100% on that though). With my reptiles, I have always used the red heat lamp at night and it would certainly stand to reason that chicks need "night time" too. Thanks!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by