Beginner Question

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by shadowmane, Mar 5, 2012.

  1. shadowmane

    shadowmane Chillin' With My Peeps

    Okay, this is our 6th day with our ladies. I'm really enjoying their antics. I've re-introduced the black sex link to the flock, and because she is about a week older than the rest, she has asserted her dominance. Of course, it didn't make one of the Silver Laced Wyandotte's happy, but she'll get over it. I've not seen any more eye pecking. I'm crossing my fingers on that one. I've also dealt with a few chicks with pasty butts, but they have cleared up too. We're still checking their vents daily just as a precaution. So, on to my question.

    How long do I need to keep putting down newspaper under paper towels? Is it alright to just put them on the shredded paper we're using as a base now, or should I wait a little longer?
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2012
  2. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

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    I just use the paper towels for the first week, then they'll be fine on the pine shavings. I never use newspaper. I always start with pine shavings, then I put two bounty paper towels over an area of the shavings, and I spread out some chick starter on it for them. I just do it so they can scratch and they'll know the difference between the food and the shavings.
     
  3. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens

    I've heard paper towel for the first few days - a week, and then you can switch to shavings. I would never use newspaper, as it can create splayed leg, among other toe issues.

    You could always use sand instead of shavings. :)
     
  4. shadowmane

    shadowmane Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well, yesterday, I moved them out of the box into a kiddie pool with pine shavings in it. They seem to have adapted well, after picking at the pine shavings for a few hours. Now, they are running (and flying) around the whole setup. Its amazing how fast they are. You just didn't see it when they were in the box. The quarters were too confined.

    At any rate, I think the pine shavings are adding to the warmth of the whole brooder, which is a good thing. I've also switched from the white light to a red one. It upped it from 125 to 150 watt, but I think it will keep it warmer in the bigger brooder. I still can't suspend the light from the ceiling, so its on one corner of the brooder. They seem to hang out mostly on the side with the light, though they foray out. My wife told me she caught the oldest one, the Red Sex Link, taking a dust bath in the pine shavings. She said that was funny, with the others running around to see what she was doing.
     
  5. shadowmane

    shadowmane Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This is the first of my chicks that we got on Leap Day. 7 Silver Laced Wyandottes and 1 Red Sex Link. The next day, we added 7 Americaunas (sorry, my wife took those pictures... they're on her camera). I've since transferred them from the box to a swimming pool brooder.

    [​IMG]

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    They are huddling because I've only just raised the heat lamp. This is the beginning of their second week.

    I've noticed that they are starting to scratch a lot in the shavings. Should I spread some food out in the shavings as well so they actually find something, of just feed them in the feeder?
     
  6. shadowmane

    shadowmane Chillin' With My Peeps

    Here's a couple of somewhat better pictures. I used the flash this time, so they're not so washed out with the red light.

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    I'm going to have to take some personal pictures of each one soon and put them up.
     
  7. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    You don't need to put any food in the pine shavings FOR them - they will manage to get some out of the feeder into their bedding. With that said, just for fun, toss in some meal-worms for them! Be sure to have a small dish of construction sand (not "play" sand) for them to eat, too, since the mealworms will require some processing in their little gizzards.
     

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