First Flock.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by MelissaLarsen, Feb 22, 2017.

  1. MelissaLarsen

    MelissaLarsen Out Of The Brooder

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    Hello all. I started my account here back in 2014 - but have taken my sweet time (apparently since it's 2017) reading and trying to figure out as much as I could before buying my first chicks.

    During my reading - and all the conversations with friends I managed to somehow miss the topic of "pasty butt" but had a crash course in it last night. I have 7 chicks 2 White Leghorns, 4 RIR, and 1 Black Silver laced Wyandotte. I know only buying 1 of a breed is a no no - but she was in a "tank" with the RIR's I bought - the only one and looked so lonely. They are all home and, so far, seem to be doing well.

    I live in Ohio - where I am sure most of you know the winters can be rough from time to time. As it's only February it can still get pretty cold. Any advice on when I should move them out to the coop? This is the part I am most nervous about. Right now they are a week old.

    Here are some pictures of my little babies.The Black Silver laced Wyandotte isn't really friendly so taking her picture hasn't been easy --or catching her.. I hope she calms down as she gets older.

    Also, thank you all for the help and advice you probably didn't know you were giving. :)


    r. [​IMG]
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  2. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    Last edited: Feb 22, 2017
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  3. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    I second Lazy's comments. no reason why your chicks can't move into the coop immediately. It would be better for them all the way around, and the only reasons why you couldn't move them is because you have adult chickens and no electricity.

    I had Wyandotte chicks way back when I started my flock and I made the mistake of handling by reaching for them from above instead of from the side, and they grew up skittish and unwilling to be touched. Even at age eight years old, they still hate to be handled. Moving your chicks to the coop with a heating pad heat source and just letting them have the run of the whole coop will practically guarantee the chicks will grow up friendly.

    Read my article on outdoor brooding linked below to learn all the many advantages of raising chicks outside instead of indoors. Chicks do NOT need a heated enviornment as long as they have a single heat source under which to warm up.
     
  4. peeper89

    peeper89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 21, 2017
    Thems cute chicks I hope they ok
     
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  5. MelissaLarsen

    MelissaLarsen Out Of The Brooder

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    Hello Lazy Gardner, Azygous, and Pepper 89.

    Lazy Gardener and Azygous - you both have really good tips and I really appreciate it. Let me read the article suggested - I will probably have more questions. As for the Wyandotte - my plan was to keep them in a cardboard box in the basement -- my husband (god love him) panicked (and I do mean panicked) at the Rural King and had to have this metal watering container for cows - that the other chicks were in....... So, now when we reach for any of them it's from the top - but the comment by Azygous about reaching from the side actually makes sense.

    I did buy Electrolytes for their water and a friend told me to go back and get a probiotic and some cornmeal. I thought I had learned quite a bit but I guess I missed some basic stuff. LOL.
     
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    Why would your friend have you get cornmeal? No reason that I can think of. As for probiotic? Yes, you can buy some. But... totally not necessary, especially if you use fermented feed, and give them some sod/soil. As for electrolytes: totally un necessary also. You can make your own lytes from material you already have in your kitchen. And if you want to flavor it, a packet of unsweetened koolaid (the kind you have to add sugar to) does the trick. If you walk into any feed store, the employees will try to sell you lots of stuff you don't need. I'm simply a tight wad, and while I bought all the "must have's" the first time around, now, the ONLY THING I have in my chick starting tool kit is a bottle of Poultry Nutri-Drench. A single bottle will last 2 - 3 years, depending on storage condition and expiration date. Hope you don't take my tight wad suggestions as criticism, cause they certainly weren't meant to be! I just like to save money, and assume that others do also!
     
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  7. MelissaLarsen

    MelissaLarsen Out Of The Brooder

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    The cornmeal: My friend raises chickens from eggs and she said she has had great success keeping "pastybutt" away by just putting a little cornmeal over their food.

    When you say, "plug" of sod - how big of a piece - approximately? I have the sneaking suspicion that most of my chicks (minus 2) are at 2 weeks or maybe a couple days older. Why? Their coloring. The 2 RIR's have a deeper brown color - while the other two are still very light and seem smaller than the others. When I asked about their age at Rural King the person wasn't full of information about their age. He would only say, "Oh about a week or two old." That's a bad answer for me - because I like to have a little more exact info than that - this being my first flock and all.

    You're suggestions didn't bother me a bit. I appreciate the help - :)
     
  8. mobius

    mobius Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mine did great ( I was worried) with their Mama Heating Pad in the coop...worked perfectly...

    The first "plug of sod" was grassy with a bunch of dirt attached...about the size of my fist...

    and they had an early dust bath:

    [​IMG]
    and a wiffle ball with some treats in it
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    and some sprouts
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    and a little waterer with horizontal nipples
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    Have fun... i remember this fondly as such a fun time!

    Oh and the fermented food..started that early:[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2017
  9. MelissaLarsen

    MelissaLarsen Out Of The Brooder

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    Hahahahaha!! Looks like they had fun with that dirt. I will do that. It just looks fun to watch. I read the article on the "heating pad" -- gotta say I too am nervous about this. But you're right - it is a fun time and they've only been in the house for less than 24 hours. LOL.
     
  10. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    Depends on how many chicks. I like to give them a piece that is about the size of a pie plate. Just place it upside down in the bedding. At first they will freak out, thinking it's a big hairy monster that will gobble them up. But, then one brave soul will sneak up to it and peck at it... a minute or two later, it's game on!!!
     

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