Hello all, This is my first post and my first adventure with raising chickens! I would appreciate any help me with a few questions. I have 11 chicks, 2 weeks old. 1. Two of my baby chicks died at 1 week old. They were apparently healthy, and I have no idea what happened. Specifically, what can I do or look for to protect the rest of my new brood? 2. My 11 remaining chicks are in a brooder with a wire floor. Today, while transferring them for a little scratch time on the ground, I noticed that most of them have mild abrasions, not really open areas, but kind of callousy and skinned, on the bottoms of their feet. I assume it is from the wire floor. Should I change the floor? Do something else? 3. I am planning to give most of my chickens to my dad, who lives 8 hours away, for Christmas. The chicks will be almost 3 months old by then. What is the best way to transport them for an 8 hour drive? My story: my kids and I decided to hatch eggs as a lark. We read info online and on this site and decided to give it a go. We built an incubator with stuff around the garage, spending almost no money, and ended up hatching 15 eggs! This was the most exciting success for us!! 2 did not survive long after hatching and now 2 more have died. I don't know what kind of chickens we have, and I am figuring it all out as I go. I am hoping to keep 2-3 hens and give the rest to Dad. The chicks are growing very fast! I graduated them to a brooder outside with a heat lamp, and they seem much happier than when in the indoor plastic bin. I feed them chick feed (nothing else) and put an automatic dog waterer in the brooder. The chicks waste a lot of feed! I am still not sure what to use for flooring so that the poop falls through but the feed doesn't. It doesn't seem right that the chicks would just scratch around and eat feed right among the poop! I would love to hear how you all manage keeping the brooder and the water and feed clean for these messy babies. My next step is to build a coop. Again, I am confused about the flooring. Should it be wire? plywood? Some portions of each? Also, does the food and water get placed in the run area or the enclosed coop area? Thank you. I am a complete neophyte, have never done anything like this and do appreciate your helpful comments throughout this forum.