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Former Chicken Farm Employee Soon to be Chicken Owner in Texas

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Hbohm74, Nov 2, 2016.

  1. Hbohm74

    Hbohm74 In the Brooder

    Nov 2, 2016
    Austin, Texas
    Greetings everyone!

    My name is Hannah and I am excited to be finally getting my own baby chicks to raise! My husband is working on completing the construction on our coop, which will be made mostly from scrap lumber.

    I formerly worked as an office assistant and sales/customer service representative for Dare 2 Dream Farms of Lompoc, CA, a farm that sells and delivers backyard chickens and chicks in coastal California. I spent 8 months becoming a chicken "expert" learning from Megan and Jeremy and doing my own research, and was able to give advice and information about raising chickens to our customers. I'm excited to go from one who teaches to one who does!!

    I've spent much time on this website and finally decided to create an account and to contribute and learn in this amazing community.

    Once our coop is complete, I want to raise the baby chicks in the coop using a DIY ecoglow system. There is an article and thread on this website about the "Mama Hen Heating Pad" system, and if any body has experience or advice about making and using this DIY system I would be much obliged! I'm nervous about the chicks having enough heat, but am also really excited to be raising them in a "more natural" way.

    Thank you everyone and I'm happy to be a member of BYC!!!!


    Hannah (and Kris)


  2. PatiHF

    PatiHF In the Brooder

    Aug 30, 2016
    Tres Pinos, California
    How exciting for you Hannah! You are fortunate enough to be nearly an expert before you even get started! I am 65, never even touched a chicken in my life and now own 6 and am in love!!! You will be an amazing addition to this group! WELCOME!
  3. redsoxs

    redsoxs Crowing

    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    Greetings from Kansas, Hannah and Kris, and :welcome! Great to have you aboard. I haven't researched the mama hen heating pad but there are many old threads discussing the ecoglow: https://www.backyardchickens.com/newsearch?search=Ecoglow
    Best wishes on your chicken endeavor and thanks for joining BYC! :weee
  4. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

    Aug 26, 2009
    Out to pasture
    Nice to meet you Hannah, hope you will enjoy Backyard chickens as much as we do
  5. N F C

    N F C phooey! Premium Member Project Manager

    Dec 12, 2013

    Hi Hannah, congratulations on your new status! If memory serves me correctly, one of our dearest members by the name of Blooie started that thread and because of her inspiration many others have used her MHP method. Blooie lives in WY (as do I) and the MHP method works in our cold climate so I think it should do fine in yours.

    Good luck to you in your new venture, it's nice to have you here!
  6. RodNTN

    RodNTN Hatchaolic

    May 22, 2013
    Serving Jesus
    My Coop
    Hi and [​IMG] Its great to have you Hannah and Kris! I hope you have a wonderful time on BYC and best wishes! [​IMG]
  7. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

    Feb 25, 2014
    Northwestern Wyoming
    My Coop
    @N F C Thanks for letting me know about this. @Hbohm74 , I think I can help you out there with a couple of links to some articles about raising chicks using Mama Heating Pad. Being a little nervous about something that seems so "out of the box" can be intimidating, I know. But if you think about what we are doing, it makes perfect sense.

    We are giving chicks the closest alternative to a broody hen. It's that simple,and that complicated. By using a heating pad over a frame, or inside the frame as many are doing, we are imitating the way a mother hen warms chicks. She doesn't warm the entire area they are in, she just warms them. With a broody hen, chicks are out all over the place, growing, exploring, eating and drinking during the day. They just duck back under her for a quick warm-up and then they're right back out there learning to be chickens. Under Mama Heating pad, the heat is right at the chicks backs, just as it is under mom, and they duck under if they get chilled or spooked. At night it's dark and warm, and they go underneath to sleep the entire night through. And they are learning early to regulate their own comfort. And when they get a little bit bigger, their favorite spot to be is snuggled down on top of that warm, soft heating pad.

    Many users, including me, have noticed faster feathering because exposure to cooler temperatures is actually good for them. If you've ever seen chicks in a heat-lamp warmed brooder, they run all over the place, cheeping and it seems they are never still. Then one poor little fella will just collapse right where he is in sheer exhaustion. Folks always seem to think that's cute. I kinda don't. That poor little dude is tuckered out, but his brooder-mates aren't necessarily in agreement and will tromp on him, peck at his feet or whatever, until he springs back awake after just a few minutes. How is that resting in the way they are meant to? I keep shipped or home-incubated chicks indoors for the first day or so under a small pad in a wire dog crate, to be sure I don't have any with shipping stress and that newly hatched chicks are fully dry and fluffed, I want to make sure that they know where the heat is and that they are eating and drinking. Then out to the wire brooder in the chicken run they go, even though our springtime temperatures are often in the teens and twenties and snowstorms in June aren't unusual!

    Here is a video of my chicks under Mama Heating Pad in the house, the first of many groups of chicks I've raised this way, with links to the Mama Heating Pad thread and Brooding Outdoors given below it. The video starts out dark.




    I hope this information sets your mind at ease a bit. And of course, welcome to BYC!!!
    1 person likes this.

  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Crowing

    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    Best way to brood chicks. No worries about them getting too hot or too cold. They self regulate just like they would with a broody hen. Chicks are ready to move out to the coop without any heat at just 4 weeks old.
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2016
  9. BantamFan4Life

    BantamFan4Life LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO. Premium Member

    Jun 15, 2012
    Welcome to BYC! I'm glad you joined us! :)
  10. CuzChickens

    CuzChickens CountryChick

    Apr 24, 2016
    Hi there, and welcome to Backyard Chickens! So glad you could join us, and I hope you make yourself at home here!

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