Brand new baby chick, when do I give food and water?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by NewchickieLTJ, May 14, 2019.

  1. NewchickieLTJ

    NewchickieLTJ Chirping

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    May 12, 2019
    I have a brand new baby, hatched today, under a heat lamp. I am not the most prepared, because I had planned for my hen to raise her chicks...but then she accidentally killed the first one that hatched this weekend. As soon as I heard chirping from the coop, I ran out and brought it inside under my lamp. I thought for sure this baby was dead inside the egg, because she’s a day overdue. I’m shocked to have a chick on the house right now! Should I give water tonight? Should I put crumbles of starter food out? Is 95 a good temp or is that too cold? She looks a little damp still, but has some spots of feathers (silkie) starting to fluff out.

    Sorry for so many questions! This has all taken me by surprise. Chick seems to be healthy. She’ll lay down for a minute, and then get up and try to stand, chirp, lay back down, repeat. I have the baby in a Rubbermaid box, on top of thick paper towels, and have a few little stuffed animals and a soft blanket in there with it. Poor baby is by itself, and may not have a roommate for at least a few days because it’s a staggered hatch.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2019
  2. diamondsilkies

    diamondsilkies Songster

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    I offer food and water as soon as they have dried off and moved to the brooder. Make sure to gently dip their beak in the water when you first put it in the brooder, so the chick knows where they can find it. 95 F is a good temperature to start at, and then decrease by 5 F every week. It is likely that your new chick will spend a lot of her time chirping, until a friend hatches for her. Hold her as much as you can to keep her company.

    Good luck with your new baby! Ask as many questions as you like, that's what we're here for!
     
  3. ChocolateMouse

    ChocolateMouse Crowing

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    95 is great, giving food and water (water in a dish shallow enough that the chick can't drown or with marbles in it to keep it from submerging its head) can happen asap. Chick crumbles/starter/grower crumbles would be best. Put both down and dip their beak into both.

    I would pull out the stuffed animals and blanket and replace them with a mirror and a small box lined with paper towels with a hole in the side so it's like a hiding spot. Chicks need to think they have company and sometimes like having a dark, small place to sleep that feels like 'mom'. The mirror and lined box replicate this better than any plush animal.
    Unfortunately the fibers that go into something like a blanket or plush animal can also be dangerous for a chick to tug at and swallow. So I would pull those out right away even if you don't have replacements.
     
  4. NewchickieLTJ

    NewchickieLTJ Chirping

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    May 12, 2019
    Thanks so much! I dipped her beak in some water. She didn’t seem too happy, but I think may have gotten some. I don’t have any food ground up, and don’t want to wake my kids. Is it ok to just put the starter food out whole? I’m soaking some food for her right now. She keeps opening and closing her beak, which is worrying me a little bit :/
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2019
  5. getaclue

    getaclue Crossing the Road

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    Starter food is normally crumbles, and you don't have to grind it.
     
    NewchickieLTJ likes this.
  6. getaclue

    getaclue Crossing the Road

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    Double check the temp, and make sure it hasn't gotten warmer since you put the chick in. You don't have to soak food for it either.
     
    NewchickieLTJ likes this.
  7. NewchickieLTJ

    NewchickieLTJ Chirping

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    May 12, 2019
    Ok, thanks! It’s big chunks like my hen’s layer feed, so I wasn’t sure.
     
  8. getaclue

    getaclue Crossing the Road

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    Big hunks? Pellets? Starter feed is normally crumbles. Don't feed it layer feed at all.
     
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  9. NewchickieLTJ

    NewchickieLTJ Chirping

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    May 12, 2019
    It’s called Nature Serve Poultry Feed: Organic Starter Grower. It looks like pellets, not little crumbles. It’s all they had at my local hardware store...I was going to grind it up because it looks like it would be hard to eat for a baby, but maybe it’s fine :) It says it’s for chicks.
     
  10. NewchickieLTJ

    NewchickieLTJ Chirping

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    May 12, 2019
    It’s def at 95! Baby is sleeping now and is still doing some of the open/close, but not as frequently. I gave her water again, but she’s so tired and really seems to want to sleep.
     
    Albertan likes this.

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