Forst timers questions about what is normal

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by wannabeagreatmom, May 12, 2008.

  1. wannabeagreatmom

    wannabeagreatmom Hatching

    May 10, 2008
    We just received our chicks on Saturday morning. We purchased them at the feed store but were shipped from ideal. We have 8 new babies. They are in a large chick pen with plenty of food and water. I have the heat lamp on them. One Ameraucana does not seem as active as the others. She stands around alot. She is drinking and eating, but not like the others. She is also the smallest chick! Is this normal?

    There are also a couple that always have "cling-ons", shall we say? We have been trying to clean with a damp paper towel, but this is not always effective. Will they eventually stop this? It always seems to be the same two. My daughter is convinced her chick will hate her!

    Also what is best to put in the bottom of their pen and where can I get it?

    How often should I change their food per day? They have plenty always, but they do poop in it. We have one of those 10 hole feeder trays and it does seem like we throw more away than they eat.

    If we have a really nice sunny day of say 80 to 85, can I put them out on the porch with or without the heat lamp?

    Any advice would be great. My dog just had puppies yesterday and I know what to do with those, but chicks are our new normal. Thanks.
  2. lurky

    lurky Songster

    Jun 4, 2007
    Western MA
    I run warm water and hold the chicks bum right under it to loosen it and clean it good. They can die if its not cleaned off well. And keep an eye open for it because its dangerous for chicks. Welcome to BYC and
    Congratulations on the puppies and chicks [​IMG]
    Last edited: May 12, 2008
  3. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Quote:Sometimes there is a runt. Try giving it 3 drops of infants polyvisol vitamins by beak every day for a weak and see if it improves. While it is unfortunate and sad many mnay chicks do not make it the first few weeks. It is common. also there is often no reason for it. A sad but true fact of raising chicks.

    Quote:You are seeing pasty butt. make sure they are not drinking sugar water - this will make it worse.

    I run was small stream of warm water in mt kitchen sink and hold the little buttl part under it and gently work the poop free until the butt is completely clean. Dry it well. Then apply vaseline (I have also used gel baby oil) to keep the poop from sticking again. Keep a watch on them. Pasty butt unchecked can be fatal in chicks if they completely block up. If you don't see it tightening up or getting worse feed a little cooked white rice or cooked oatmeal with some plain yogurt.

    Quote:I use pine shavings.

    Quote:You should not have to change their food. Put some bricks or something else solid in the bottom of the brooder to raise up the feeder some. They will still fly up and poop in it but don't worry about it. It is normal. They do waste feed but if you keep the feeder up with something under them they can't bill out as much.

    Quote:Yes, for short periods at a time. It is similar to hardening off plants for the garden. You can also put a nice clod of dirt and grassint he brooder for them to peck and scratch at. it gives them a start on a healthy immune system to be exposed to the germs and fauna in the earth they will be raised on.

    Quote:Teach those puppies and the dog VERY early that those chicks are off limits and belong to you. NEVER leave any dog unattended with chickens or chicks. As safe as you might think they are too many here have found that their gentle loving dogs will rip a part and eat their chicks in a flash when unattended.

    Also remember to have fun!
  4. wannabeagreatmom

    wannabeagreatmom Hatching

    May 10, 2008
    Thanks for the help. Any ideas where I can get the vitamin drops?

    Also thanks about washing the bottoms. I didn't want to make them worse by getting them to wet. I will do that today.

    And yes, very good advice about the dog. We learned that the hard way last week when we brought home our very first chick. Now we are all paranoid about everything!
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    You can get the Poly-Vi-Sol drops at any drugstore, grocery store or for that matter Walmart.... they're what's sold as vitamin supplements for human babies [​IMG]

  6. crooked stripe

    crooked stripe Songster

    Jan 14, 2008
    N.E Ohio- Suffield
    I would also raise the water from the brooder floor. I put mine on 2 6'"square pieces of 1x6 screwed together. I think the poop in the water grossed me out more than them. John
  7. pattycake

    pattycake Songster

    May 7, 2007
    fingerlakes, ny
    I had a runt chick, too, who just stood under the heat lamp. I thought she'd die. I gave her cooked egg yolk and yogurt and extra attention and she survived, though she lays small eggs!

    You will throw away a lot of food the first month or so, but they get neater as they get older, especially when you can switch to pellets. Changing the water is the biggest pain about having chicks, I found; they constantly scratch shavings into it, poop in it, get food in it somehow, spill it....
  8. CityGirlintheCountry

    CityGirlintheCountry Green Eggs and Hamlet

    Jul 7, 2007
    Middle TN
    Wannabe- I got my first chicks this past Wednesday too. I couple of mine have the cling-on issue too. What I found to work okay was to dampen a paper towel and hold it on their little rump until the dried poop softens. You can then use the damp paper towel to kind of scrape/gently pull the poop off. Some of my girls sit real still for this and some protest mightily (mainly indignant cheeping). I talk softly to mine the whole time and then put them down in front of a bowl of warm mash when I'm done. They totally forget about having their tushie cleaned.

    I have also found that a daily tushie check gives me a chance to eyeball each one individually AND helps them learn that I'm not the boogieman. After five days of this about half of them will sit quietly in my hand while I'm checking out the hiney. The only protesters now are the bantums, but they're quite the princesses, don't you know, and are highly insulted that I'm looking at their bum.
  9. catfish

    catfish Songster

    Apr 13, 2008
    Greenbrier, Arkansas
    I'll pipe in on the outside question.

    I have 7 chicks with a brood hen, she comes out in the morning and they stay out all day. I've noticed that they'll go under her for maybe 10 minutes every couple hours, they'd rather be around her with her scratching looking for bugs and such.

    So any nice day your little ones will ok outside for a couple hours at a time with moderate tempatures.
  10. wannabeagreatmom

    wannabeagreatmom Hatching

    May 10, 2008
    I have all the bottoms clean, but I could not get the runny bottoms to eat the rice. My other girl is not looking well either. I will try the cooked egg yolk, but how to get her to eat it? She is happiest when my daughter holds her, but I didn't know if too much of this might make things worse for the chick. Oddly enough, out of 8 chicks, the two Ameraucanas are the worst health.

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