any tips??

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by senrabruk, Sep 12, 2010.

  1. senrabruk

    senrabruk Out Of The Brooder

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    I am getting my first chicks in 2 weeks and I can't wait!![​IMG]
    I have been reading anything I can get my hands on but I still feel clueless.
    I have a tub for my brooder and I have feeders, waters and a light but I have one of those lizard bulbs that only gives out heat and know light. do they need a light?
    and what can I do or feed them to help them after I get them home?( they are coming in the mail)
    Or anything I need to know!

    thanks
    ~Micah
     
  2. Louieandthecrew

    Louieandthecrew I am actually a female!

    They don't need light as long as they have NATURAL light and any tractor supply store should sell CHICK FEED. Just ask a worker [​IMG]
     
  3. Rockerchic

    Rockerchic Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You mentioned using a tub. Are you aware of spradle-leg? Your chics will need to have a non-slippery surface to walk on, or they can easily damage their legs. I used a layer of newspaper for easy clean up, topped with woodshavings. You could substitue shredded paper for the wood shavings if necessary, or use some straw. Anyway,it sounds like a fun time at your house. Good luck
     
  4. senrabruk

    senrabruk Out Of The Brooder

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    how thick of a layer of shavings?
    I am soo thankful that you guys are so helpful!
    should I keep them in the house? because my coop is way in the back.
     
  5. Lisa202

    Lisa202 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 20, 2010
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    Last edited: Sep 13, 2010
  6. Rockerchic

    Rockerchic Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I just poured in enough to equal about a 1" layer, then spread it out a bit. Provides the chics with something to do also, as they shove it around and make little nests. I found that I needed to put the food and water dispensers on boards (or a used telephone book, or whatever) to keep the shavings out of the food and water. Just observe the chics to make sure everyone can get to the essentials. It's a lot of fun, and a bit or work.
     
  7. ADozenGirlz

    ADozenGirlz The Chicken Chick[IMG]emojione/assets/png/00ae.png

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    I use paper towels over the pine shavings for the first week. That was the recommendation I read most frequently when I was preparing my first brooder. I put a puppy training pad on the very bottom of my brooder (huge cardboard box) then cover it with a thin layer of pine shavings (an inch or so) I do it just to humor myself that it's more comfy for the fuzzy butts that way) and then top it with a few layers of paper towels. It makes clean-up super easy the first 5-7 days, just remove the dirty paper towels. Plus, a lot of folks say the chicks will have a hard time seeing their feed among the shavings and will eat the shavings early-on. That's easily avoided with paper towels.

    Next, I would recommend a thermometer for the brooder. You really want to know that it is the proper temperature in there so as to avoid problems like overheating and pasty butt. Plus, you'll want to lower the temp in the brooder by five degrees per week and it's helpful to know what five degrees actually is!

    I keep my chicks in the garage in the spring/summer and in the basement in the winter, but there are plenty of people who choose to keep them in the house. Just be mindful that they are SUPER dusty critters! Wherever you're prepared to deal with lots of dust is the best location for them. The coop probably isn't a good place for them yet b/c you'll want to see them and interact with them (if you're anything like the rest of us!). When you do move them to the coop though, keep them confined to the inside of the coop for the first week. No run time, no free-ranging. This lets them know the place to go at night is the coop and you won't have other problems due to letting them out too soon.

    Some people put a little sugar in their water ON the FIRST DAY ONLY to help them get a kick-start due to the tough transport. Don't do it longer or you'll run into problems like pasty butt.
    Keep fresh water and medicated chick starter feed available to them at all times. When they get home, as you put them in the brooder, dip their little beaks gently in the water to let them know what it is and where it is and they'll figure the rest out.

    Good luck, have fun!! Take lots of pictures and be sure to post them!!
     
  8. Rockerchic

    Rockerchic Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I started mine in the garage, using a heat lamp of course. Mine were in a large metal dog crate. I covered it with some towels for the cooler nights, being careful to not put them too close to the hanging lamp. My crate sat on the floor, but it would have been much easier if I had raised it to table level.Have fun with the babies!
     
  9. senrabruk

    senrabruk Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 2, 2010
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    Quote:thanks soo much this is very helpful!
    I will post pics when they get here!!!
    I can't wait!!![​IMG]
     
  10. SweetTea

    SweetTea New Egg

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    Congratulations on your first chicks! I just got my first chicks in June. I'm not sure where I read this advice, it may have been here but I found it to be useful.

    ...If your chicks are arriving by post, call the post-office to let them know and give them your contact details, even though they should receive this information. Just to be sure. Also, in my area my usual delivery post-office was not the one my chicks went to or where I picked them up.

    ...Be sure you can go get them as soon as the post-office calls.

    ...When you get them home, check their bottoms for pasting-up. Evidently the poos can get crusty and it's a problem, if this has happened, take a soft, damp cloth and gently clean their bottoms.

    ...Don't handle them other than to get them settled when they first arrive. They'll be stressed enough.

    ...I had a warm light and thermometer and stuck to the recommended 90F+ then lowering by 5F each week till reaching outdoor temperatures. Others will be able to speak better to this though.

    I kept my chicks in a large plastic tub the first week, with a good thick layer of wood chips. There wasn't enough poos to worry about newspaper on the bottom, in my case (I only have five chickens).

    I got very lucky and managed to snag a cantaloupe bin (heavy cardboard) from the local grocery-store. It was quite large and worked very well until the chicks were ready to move outside.

    They are very, very dusty. I found this out the hard way!
     

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