Do I have everything I need to start?

jeria

Songster
May 5, 2017
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Independence MO
Am I good to go with chicks when they get here? My only foray into chicks was in the 1980"s. I have chicks arriving the end of the week so want to be prepared. So I have a big cardboard box with about 2" of pine shaving litter, a screened top, a metal jar waterer, a metal jar feeder, chick feed, heat lamp and secured with 2 methods. I need to get a thermometer yet and a bag of chick grit which I will get tomorrow. The brooder is in my laundry room in the basement that I can close off from my cat. I will test the temp once I get the thermometer and adjust the heat lamp appropriately. My house has central air so cool in the basement.
 
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Blooie

Team Spina Bifida
6 Years
Feb 25, 2014
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Might I suggest one more thing? If you can, pick up some Poultry Nutri-drench. It is a quick energy source because it bypasses the digestive system and goes directly into the blood stream, just the boost shipped chicks sometimes need to get them over the hump. One bottle will last a long, long time, (unless you dump the open bottle to the floor...sigh) and it can also be used on adults that get stressed, ill or injured. Follow the directions on the back...I found it easiest to give chicks on a Q-tip. Just dip it, hold it at the junction of their little beaks and when they peep, push the Q-tip so that a bit goes in. If the chick clamps down on it, so much the better. Works for me. Then add some to their water for the first day. I don't like to use any product longer than is absolutely necessary - and Nutri-drench can give them very loose stools if you just keep giving it day after day. Good luck!
 

jeria

Songster
May 5, 2017
1,390
1,772
236
Independence MO
Might I suggest one more thing? If you can, pick up some Poultry Nutri-drench. It is a quick energy source because it bypasses the digestive system and goes directly into the blood stream, just the boost shipped chicks sometimes need to get them over the hump. One bottle will last a long, long time, (unless you dump the open bottle to the floor...sigh) and it can also be used on adults that get stressed, ill or injured. Follow the directions on the back...I found it easiest to give chicks on a Q-tip. Just dip it, hold it at the junction of their little beaks and when they peep, push the Q-tip so that a bit goes in. If the chick clamps down on it, so much the better. Works for me. Then add some to their water for the first day. I don't like to use any product longer than is absolutely necessary - and Nutri-drench can give them very loose stools if you just keep giving it day after day. Good luck!

Is that avail @ Tractor Supply, any idea? I'm in the city so limited as to sources unless I order it online. Back years ago I bought chicks from a local hatchery, the owners were in their 70's then and when they retired it closed. I bought 50 and didn't lose any until the coyotes got them. I only drove the 5 miles with them in a box. Ordering chicks on line seems odd but none available without driving long ways.
 

jeria

Songster
May 5, 2017
1,390
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236
Independence MO
Anxious now for baby chicks to arrive and hoping they are all safe when the get here.

I forgot the Nutri-drench when I was at TSC getting grit but will be by there one evening this week. They were closing early for the holiday, so won't go back today.

I have a shallow pan of dirt for dust baths from my coop site drying in the garage, muddy out there so tilled the top in hopes of it drying out enough to level it soon. I'm assuming a small bowl of grit in a corner will be enough. The heat lamp is at a height to keep the brooder box at one end at 90, the other end a bit cooler but didn't measure. I learned I need to open the door to let humidity escape if I do a hot water load of laundry as they will be in a laundry room. Usually there would be plenty of ventilation. I usually leave the interior door open but want to keep Miss Queen Ruby kitty out.

FYI I use no scented products in my laundry and no fabric softeners so no issue with poisoning birds from fumes. With a parrot and my allergies artificial scented products are banned from my house. FYI Glade KILLS birds.
 

Blooie

Team Spina Bifida
6 Years
Feb 25, 2014
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I don't want to muddy the water here, but have you thought about using a heating pad instead of a heat lamp, especially in your heat? That way the chicks aren't in a confined area unable to cool off. They pop underneath if they get a bit of chill and then go back to exploring and running around. Oh, and they are quiet all night long - no cheeping all night and running all over the place. Just a thought....

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/956958/mama-heating-pad-in-the-brooder-picture-heavy-update
 

jeria

Songster
May 5, 2017
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Independence MO
Actually haven't considered it much and thanks will keep this in mind for any future chicks. Currently I have to start them inside as the coop is not built. I had a lamp, bought a new red bulb, the ancient one didn't work.. They will be in a room with AC set upstairs at 73 and the basement is usually cooler. All the heating pads I know of have timers, I can't even make yogurt using them any longer because they turn off, is there a special heating pad? At this point I'm spending 3 or 4 times as much on the coop and run as I had planned to make it secure and $50.00+ dollars on shipping. . So don't want to at the moment spend a bunch more $$. One side of the box is 90 the other side 80 and I only will be getting 4 chicks. If I drop the lamp down an inch or so it will get to 95 or raise it a bit it drops and I can angle it as well.. I can easily raise the lamp to decrease the heat as it is set up on a photographer's backdrop holder. It will go up to 7 feet so I have flexibility. I think this will work for a few weeks until I can move them outside. Right now our nights are dropping into the 40's or 50's. The temps won't even out until mid to late June and then heat normally later in the summer.
 
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Blooie

Team Spina Bifida
6 Years
Feb 25, 2014
17,197
32,590
827
Northwestern Wyoming
My Coop
My Coop
Actually haven't considered it much and thanks will keep this in mind for any future chicks. Currently I have to start them inside as the coop is not built. I had a lamp, bought a new red bulb, the ancient one didn't work.. They will be in a room with AC set upstairs at 73 and the basement is usually cooler. All the heating pads I know of have timers, I can't even make yogurt using them any longer because they turn off, is there a special heating pad? At this point I'm spending 3 or 4 times as much on the coop and run as I had planned to make it secure and $50.00+ dollars on shipping. . So don't want to at the moment spend a bunch more $$. One side of the box is 90 the other side 80 and I only will be getting 4 chicks. If I drop the lamp down an inch or so it will get to 95 or raise it a bit it drops and I can angle it as well.. I can easily raise the lamp to decrease the heat as it is set up on a photographer's backdrop holder. It will go up to 7 feet so I have flexibility. I think this will work for a few weeks until I can move them outside. Right now our nights are dropping into the 40's or 50's. The temps won't even out until mid to late June and then heat normally later in the summer.

You can absolutely use Mama Heating Pad indoors. Many, many people do. WHen I get shipped chicks or hatch chicks in the incubator, I even keep mine indoors for the first few days, under my small heating pad, until I know they are familiar with how to get heat, how to eat, and how to drink. After that, out they go! But they don't have to go out at all until they are older and you are ready.

As for the pad turning off, there is a pad that many of us use, the Sunbeam X-press Heat. It's available at Walmart, Walgreens, and of course on line. There are two sizes and it will say right on the box that it has the "stay on" option, which is just a button you touch to keep it from turning off. Actually I got my large one from Amazon and my small one from Walmart. I'll give you a link to the one on Amazon so you can see what kind I mean...

http://www.amazon.com/Sunbeam-2013-...kmr1&keywords=Sunbeam+x-tra+large+heating+pad

I wasn't trying to talk you into anything, merely asking if you'd ever thought about it. If you have a way for the lamp to work for you, then by all means, use it. ;)
 

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