Diary of Chicks in a College Life

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by 4theloveofhens, May 31, 2010.

  1. 4theloveofhens

    4theloveofhens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Greetings. [​IMG]

    I don't expect anyone to actually follow this, or reply, but even so, writing it soothes my overwhelmed and uneasy thoughts. Perhaps this would be better suited for a blog, but none-the-less, here I am. Finally starting my diary of my chicken escapades (It will get shorter as I go on, I promise...). If you care to keep reading, grab a cup o' coffee, a snack, take a bathroom break, because I'm sure to bore and disappoint. [​IMG]

    In recent times (meaning in the last 2 weeks), I have become a "user". That is, a BYC user AND abuser. I browse this site more than youtube, google, or craigslist combined. And I am on those a ton. Some may call it unhealthy, others (probably the few people I consistently see in the BYC chat) would say it's "normal". Whatever the case may be, here I go.

    In short (obviously not), I was raised on small farm that consisted of chickens, goats, ducks, horses, cats, dogs, bunnies, and the unwelcome barn mice that comes with...well, a barn. We never had to think much about "raising chickens", we just babied them for a few weeks and threw them in with the goats. Unfortunately, only lasting a few years due to fox, coyotes, hawks, or unknown demises...

    Now, at the spunky irrational age of 21 and a senior, I have embarked on my new calling: to successfully raise chicks into glorious egg laying hens while in college. I will show all those people out there whoever doubted me, that Yes, peace on earth is possible when owning chickens. It is a journey not many have traveled, and I am sure to encounter many battles of my own, but I can assure you, I will win the war.

    At least I hope to...

    So here I am, challenging my inner abilities and already fighting countless arguments from my family and friends (some supportive, but maybe they're just afraid to piss a girl off when she's determined? [​IMG] ). The boyfriend (yes, I will marry this man), is my realistic but encouraging comrade. Thankfully, he happens to love chickens, and as long as I pay for it (ahem), he's happy to help, cuddle, play, talk to, and hold (I'm referring to him and the chicks here, everyone... [​IMG] ).

    Summer is about to "really" start for me June 7. That day, and during my nanny job (yes - I am a college student with college "careers"), I hope to take the two boys I'm nannying and pick up my girls. If not June 7th, then June 8th (I understand if these boys would rather not, but then again, they have chickens, so I'm sure they can appreciate). I will be picking up four lovely ladies from our local feed store, and this is what I plan to get: Bantam Cochin, Buff Orpington, Red Sex Link, and an Americauna.

    Oui Oui, this is bound to fail, which is why it's important that I make it a success. I am a renter, attempting to "hide" my brooder in my current back yard (take them in at night), until I can find a new place to move that has a fenced backyard and welcomes my four girls. This is the crazy part right? EVERYONE is thinking, Wait you fool, until you can actually do this. But I say, why wait?

    I can do this and I will make it happen. You know that feeling when in the back of their mind, you know other people are like, "Oh she's going to fail" or "Can't wait to say I told you so?", Well, none of my friends or family would outwardly say that...Oh...Wait, I guess they probably would...In a nice way...Anyway, I want to be the one to say "I told YOU so!" and then I'll slyly smile and hold up a basket of my girls' fresh eggs for the taking. [​IMG]

    Inconceivable! But all things aside, I can try, and waste your poor souls' time reading this. So sit back and relax. It may last a month, it may last years, but I plan to do whatever I can to make my dream a reality, and to take you along in my journey to raising happy chicks in a stressful and tight-budget college life.

    Until next time,
    4 the love of Hens

    PS If this is bad place to be posting this thread on BYC, please let me know! I'm just a newbie!
    PPS The journey starts tonight, will UPDATE!
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2010
  2. Coffee4Me

    Coffee4Me Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm subscribing. Keep me informed about your clandestine chicken operation!
     
  3. Nava

    Nava I Got The Naked Neck Blues

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    Ocala Fl
    i'll buy some eggs from you, i know you can do it, i;ll be watchin and trying to help if you need it. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  4. 4theloveofhens

    4theloveofhens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] You would not believe what I found. Spread this around to all your feathered friends and their "parents", I think it suits us quite well.

    Billie Holiday, one of my favorites, wrote this: Just Press play on the the google song link.

    http://www.google.com/search?q=back...s=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a

    That bird with feathers of blue
    Is waiting for you
    Back in your own backyard

    You'll see your castles in Spain
    Through your window pane
    Back in your own backyard

    Oh you can go to the East
    Go to the West
    Someday you'll come
    Weary at heart
    Back where you started from

    You'll find your happiness lies
    Right under your eyes
    Back in your own backyard

    ---------
    It may be tacky, it may not match, but it'll get the job done without me having to resort to solely canned food.

    I plan to record every single cost I spend on my chicks and raising for....[reason here]

    Today I traveled the long and perilous journey to my parents house on a different planet to finish some other business but also to examine what we have around here for chickens. While here, of course, I had another discussion with my parents, but don't fret- I stayed strong, kept my chin up and my voice unwavering. Yes. I have not let you down...yet.

    But treasures I found, and behold (pics another day since I stupidly left my camera at home!), I found an old guinea pig cage ( [​IMG] strange since we've never owned any sort of animal that would occupy this cage?) and it's perfect for my brooder! It's about 1.5 ft x 3 ft, the wire bars are about 1 inch x 6 inches and there is a plastic bin thing on the bottom six inches tall. So I figure that'll be good enough because...

    ITS FREE!

    I also found some scrap (well...I made into scrap) PVC pipe to which my dad reluctantly sliced off about a foot and drilled a hole for me (I believe he was rolling his eyes as he was doing this?) [​IMG] I plan to just use some string (yarn in my case) or zip ties (good to have around the house anyway!) to hang up the pipe. Hopefully they won't slip off of this to easily since it's plastic...

    Then I swiped some puppy training pads (parents "had" a golden retriever puppy...now she's a monster, amazing how that works...) to just start off with until I CHOOSE to afford wood shavings. I plan to clean the brooder twice a day, keep the bf happy and use both sane.

    I am a little worried about something getting to my chicks during the day , either knocking the cage over and everything tumbling out, (bad image) so I hope to get some bricks or cinder blocks to put around it to keep that from happening. I have a cocker spaniel who is on guard duty (he is working towards his retirement plan) but sometimes falls asleep at the job (what old man wouldn't?). I also found a 'self-filling' dog water bowl that'll work perfect for chicks water/food, whatever I decide. I'll toss some rocks in there (for water) and just need to find something simple for food dish. I'll put a towel on one end to keep out drafts, and lucky me, we already have the heat lamp from previous chicks! And to my luck, we already have some enzyme stuff to put in chicks water that's supposed to do something good. (probably just is sugar. Thanks for that.)

    So -
    the only things I need to purchase/find for free for brooder as of now
    Chicks
    Chick starter feed
    Thermometer (I almost had temperature gauge typed here, then erased it...DER.)
    Bricks to hold surround cage (can probably find for free!)
    Extension cord (good to have on hand anyway, IN LIFE. Ya.)
    Nanny (Yes. You read right. My "surrogate" mother hen/stuffed animal I am calling my girls' nanny, because, I am and will always be, their mother. Will post pics, this is a fun part of getting things ready, I get to shop for stuffed animals! I'll try to find something cute + poop worthy. Oh, I'm a child all over again!).

    Things that were free
    cage
    puppy pads
    training roost
    enzyme water stuff
    rocks for water
    heat lamp/bulb
    zipties (probably take some from my dad's plethora)
    PVC piping
    water bowl
    Dad's skillzzzzz
    Towel

    Should be cheap [​IMG]

    unfortunately the process will remain on hold until I am back at home next sunday/monday. I will post pics and contin...sorry, moth hitting ceiling fan, thought it was a June bug, adrenaline rush, almost "spider crawled" out of room [​IMG] ). Will keep you updated, but not too much will be happening until next weekend when it's "pre family day"! YAY!

    Thanks for reading! Tips, tricks, or fix? - I appreciate it all!

    When it all comes down to it, those that can't talk it through, type through it.
     
  5. Nava

    Nava I Got The Naked Neck Blues

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    the PVC pipe if you are going to use it as a roost make sere that it is not smoth couse they will slid off, I have some PVC roost for my grown birds and they kept slidin off, so i made it a lil rough for them to stand on, sandpaper, or just rub the pipe against a corner of a wall, or sidewalk. anithing just to make it a lil rough.
     
  6. 4theloveofhens

    4theloveofhens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:GREAT! Thanks for the awesome tip! I have some *free* sand paper at home to rough it up with! Thanks so much for the help! [​IMG]
     
  7. write2caroline

    write2caroline Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jacksonville
    You would be surprised what you can find for FREE.

    We have pallets a plenty for building coops, Everything my chicken run has been made with tossed fencing and basically trash we repurposed. Cruise around nice apartment complexes near the end of the month and you will find all kinds of treasures when people move out. The bakery department in walmarts and most grocery stores are always glad to give you frosting buckets which range in all kinds of sizes and very useful for making feeders and waterers plus great for storage. Play sand - you can get 50 pounds for about $5 at any home inprovement store is better than the best pine shavings as far as medium for chicks. MINE LOVE IT!!!!! The grocery stores toss out all kinds of fruit and veggies once a week - make friends with the produce guy - they will tell you when they are tossing and they have to put it in the trash but everything we "harvested" was great and feedable to the chickens! That is a once a week wonder for us. As a college student you might have already discovered College kids have great trash - they toss the most useful stuff and think nothing it seems of donating it to say a Salvation army. Seriously, you can "gather" and take to the flea market or a yard sale a ton of stuff and sell it for nothing and everyone is happy. I have resold more "trash" and when I was in a bind I made a few hundred to support my chicken addiction.

    Keep that in mind for your chicken oddessy.

    Caroline
     
  8. Coffee4Me

    Coffee4Me Out Of The Brooder

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    I plan to record every single cost I spend on my chicks and raising for....[reason here]

    This link doesn't work. What is your reason?
     
  9. blueberrychickens

    blueberrychickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Best of luck to you, I'll be following your adventure w/ your chicks. I'll be getting mine the week after you do, & I can't wait!! It is fun getting all the things ready for the little fuzz butts. We started our coop this weekend & it looks great! We still have a ways to go, but at least it is started! Gotta work on making the brooder this week, but that will be easier than the coop. Check out yard sales for your "nanny" they always seem to have stuffed animals for cheap, or even the Salvation Army.
     
  10. 4theloveofhens

    4theloveofhens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I don't really have one reason... [​IMG]
     

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