Going camping two weeks after getting chicks?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Melileesun, Feb 13, 2013.

  1. Melileesun

    Melileesun Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 10, 2013
    Austin, TX
    Hi All,
    I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of Buff Oprington chicks at my local feed store this coming weekend. They receive different chicks weekly but, this is the breed I would like to start with. So in my quest to learn about raising backyard chickens (between being a busy mom to a 15-month-old) and working part-time I completely forgot that we have a camping trip scheduled the first weekend in March!
    So my question is, what would I do with 2 baby chicks while we are away for two nights? Does anyone have advice? I certainly DO NOT want to compromise their health by having someone come to check on them once a day, would I bring them camping [​IMG]or should I just hold off until I am able to commit to being here with them for several months before venturing out?
    What would you do? My husband scheduled the camping trip as a part of a Christmas gift to finally use the tent he bought me last year, I think he would feel pretty bad if I cancelled so that's not an option.
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    It might be best to wait for the chicken adventure. There's always opportunities to get chicks.
    Barring that option, if you have a large enough space, a large enough feeder, a large enough waterer and you have the heat lamp at the right height they could easily go 2 or 3 days without you.
    It's just a little more iffy for a first time chicken owner. You may not know the best precautions to take.
    Lots of things can go wrong that I could probably prepare for after raising chicks most of my life but it's best to check on them a few times a day at that age.
    Among them is the water running out and soaking the bedding or them scratching stuff into the water so there is none available to them. Power going out or being too hot or too cold. A large group of chicks can handle a little cooler but with 2 alone, temperature will be critical.

    Another point, why are you only getting 2 chicks? I wouldn't recommend less than 4 at a minimum for several reasons..
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  3. Melileesun

    Melileesun Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 10, 2013
    Austin, TX
    Should I start with 4? I have a small urban backyard and have been looking at coops recommended for 2-4 hens, with them free ranging during the day. I figured I would start small, figure out what I'm doing and go from there. Ideally 3-4 would be perfect for us. The feed store is getting Barred Plymouth Rocks in a few weeks so I was considering picking up 1-2 more at that time.
     
  4. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    middle TN

    Adding baby chicks to a brooder with 3-weekers is iffy and some would say it's a bad idea. There is a good bit of size and activity difference and at 3 weeks, pecking order shenanigans may already be starting. So, 3 weeks is the max I'd go. Now, I will say that I mixed ages (3 weeks to 3 days) but everyone was new to the brooder at once, I had two feeders to provide plenty of opportunities, and I provided a little table (that was meant for elevating the feeder as they got big enough) to offer a hideout if needed. The little one would run under there with her bugs to keep the bigger ones from stealing and they are tougher than you might guess so she did fine in spite of occasional trampling.

    Oh, and if you take them camping, take pictures because that would be hilarious! Probably better to get someone to chick-sit.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  5. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    I let someone chicken sit once with 2 new chicks when I went camping. The brooder was too small and the heat lamp too close.
    He cooked them. I'll never use a container for a brooder again.
    I do something like either of the following (by the way, the first pic has 3 day olds with 3 1/2 week olds - no problems because of all the space.
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
  6. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    A minimum of 4 because chicks and chickens die. They're very social animals and need a flock. A chicken alone does very poorly. Needing to add more later, after they're grown can be difficult.
    This post makes my point https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/744907/only-one-chick-left-what-to-do#post_10476985

    You will eat more eggs when you have delicious fresh eggs in your backyard. There will be periods when they don't lay or lay infrequently. That's a lot of work to go through and still have to buy eggs from the grocery store.

    Be careful with the manufacturer recommendations for coop size. They tend to overestimate. Get the actual dimensions and go to the learning center tab at the top of the page and see the size coop you need for the # of birds you want.
    IMO the recommendations from mfgs would only work for bantams.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013

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