First Time Chicks...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Elven Dreams, Mar 18, 2009.

  1. Elven Dreams

    Elven Dreams Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello! I'm still fairly new here and new to chickens outside of freezer wrap..... [​IMG]

    So I went to TSC today and they had chicks. Not a huge selection at all.. [​IMG] But I bought six.

    I have them in my little home made brooder and they are doing great so far. They are eating, drinking, pooping, pooping, eating, pooping and cheeping.. and pooping! lol

    I don't have a thermometer in there but its toasty to me and they all seem happy. They are roaming the entire cage and seem comfortable. I have a light blanket around it to stop drafts and to cover them at night.

    I assume I leave the light on all the time, correct? Also, how in the world do you tell what sex they are? lol They had mostly straight run assorted so I have no clue what I actually have breed wise. I think two for sure are RI Reds. I'll try to post a pic but my camera is not cooperating.

    I checked their vents and two were a little messy but not bad so I cleaned them up.

    I think I'm doing everything okay but just wanted to post on here and get some moral support! lol


    Also, my feed store is getting in a bigger selection at the end of this month so I want to get some more... I know I need to keep them quarantined from the others at first.. How long? They will be about two weeks or less younger than these.


    Thanks for reading and any helpful advice you can add!

    *doodles off to explore the forums some more*
     
  2. supermom

    supermom Out Of The Brooder

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    Sounds good! Congrats... you may have to wait and see (or hear) if they are male or female... sometimes it takes a while before they start crowing. Here is a good tip: Yes, keep the light on all day and night... watch the little chicks. If they are huddled together away from the heat, the heat is too high. If they are all crowded under the lamp, they are probably a bit cold. Roaming around eating and pooping everywhere means they are doing great! Best of luck!
     
  3. Elven Dreams

    Elven Dreams Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks! I'm really excited and nervous too! lol
     
  4. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    I got some from McMurray then bought more at the feed store a week or so later. Feed store uses Ideal. I should have quarantined, I suppose, although I don't think it was as much of a threat as bringing mature birds into a flock from someone's farm or an auction or something. I didn't because I really didn't have the space. Besides, I figure you are weighing chance of disease against more difficulty in joining the groups when they are older. I had no problems.

    This is not a recommendation, just a report of one experience.

    Are you using a red light? Some have found it keeps them calmer, esp. at night.

    Why the blanket on the top? Won't it change the temp? If the breeder sides are solid, is there really a draft coming from somewhere? Would there still be some ventilation? You didn't really describe your setup. If they do need the blanket, you might check them for being too hot after it's been on them a while.

    My fancy-dancy breeder was a cardboard box. When they started flying, I put bird netting over the top - Home Depot, about $6. Heat lamp was held up by a floor lamp. They were in a spare bedroom; I kept the window partly open throughout.
     
  5. Elven Dreams

    Elven Dreams Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Currently I'm using a 100 watt bulb since that is what I had on hand!

    I have a wooden box from an old foot locker that is about 4 inches deep or so. On top of that I made a cage out of small hole wire. I have to have it totally safe since I have a cat.. lol.

    I put the blanket over it to help warm it up today since I had the heat off in the kitchen and it was a bit chilly. They seem quite comfortable.

    I will try to load a picture but my camera has been giving me fits telling me fully charged correct batteries are dead. [​IMG]
     
  6. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

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    My Coop
    Congratulation on you new family. From your post it looks like you have all of your bases covered. Please post some pics. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  7. Omran

    Omran Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2008
    Bagdad KY
    Well I am glad you have some chicks, and Would like to welcome you to our big Chickens Family, I think you are doing every thing by the book. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]


    Omran
     
  8. mjdtexan

    mjdtexan Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 30, 2008
    Houston(ish)
    You may want to get a thermometor. However if there is enough room for them to get away from the light if its to warm, they will move away on their own. Mine did. Sounds like you are on your way to being a good chicken owner. Good luck.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2009
  9. Elven Dreams

    Elven Dreams Chillin' With My Peeps

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    aww thanks you guys! I had NO CLUE til I found this site in a google search. [​IMG]:bow:bow I owe it ALL to BYC! lol

    I just sat and stared at them for about 15 minutes. They are so fun to watch! They are settling down somewhat for the night now. Adorable to watch them try to huddle up under each others tiny little wings, lol.

    They seem to enjoy the temp that the brooder is at now. I am going to pick up a thermometer tomorrow. I forgot to put it on my list today!

    One more question: It's in the 70s here a decent part of the day, at what point can I take them out to get some sunshine? I will be leaving them in the brooder for the most part til I get a small pen built outside. And they will NOT be without supervision! Can I take them out in the brooder and let them bask in some sun now or should I let them get a little older? I think they are about 3 days old. (TSC is great but not very many helpful chicken people there!)
     
  10. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    They should tolerate short periods in the sun even now. They will let you know if they are not comfortable.
     

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