I’m getting Rhode Island Red chicks

RIR chicks

Songster
Sep 28, 2020
218
683
123
I am going to get Rhode Island Red chicks soon. We are getting them from Meyer Hatchery. I live in Indiana and Meyer Hatchery is in Ohio so when they get ordered they should arrive soon instead of a couple of days. I’m a bit nervous because my friend said her mom used to work at a post office and she saw chicks just being thrown around at the post office before. It is fall so I dont know if a red heat lamp would keep them warm. I heard the heat lamp and shavings can be a fire hazard is there any Hoosiers out there who have experienced this?

P.S. if you don’t know what a Hoosier is it is someone who lives in Indiana.
 

wyoDreamer

Free Ranging
Nov 10, 2010
5,217
8,221
501
NE Wisconsin
I just got 8 week-old chicks from a friend who ordered 20. She wanted a dozen and the neighbor wanted her to order some for him, only once they came in, he didn't want them anymore. I have them out in our barn (no livestock but chickens) with a Mamma-Heating-Pad and they are doing great. It was 46 degrees this morning.
Check out the Momma-Heating-Pad thread. It is getting huge, but the basic concepts are covered in the first few pages.
My heating pad got chewed by mice and no longer works, so I am using a "Pet Mat" heating pad. It is a hard plastic pad that stays warm, I bought it in the chicken section of Fleet Farm. I used the MHP frame to create a cave over the top of that with a towel and the chicks seem to like it. They were all out of the cave and looking for breakfast when I got out there this morning. They make very little noise, just happy little peeps, so they must be doing OK.
 

RIR chicks

Songster
Sep 28, 2020
218
683
123
I just got 8 week-old chicks from a friend who ordered 20. She wanted a dozen and the neighbor wanted her to order some for him, only once they came in, he didn't want them anymore. I have them out in our barn (no livestock but chickens) with a Mamma-Heating-Pad and they are doing great. It was 46 degrees this morning.
Check out the Momma-Heating-Pad thread. It is getting huge, but the basic concepts are covered in the first few pages.
My heating pad got chewed by mice and no longer works, so I am using a "Pet Mat" heating pad. It is a hard plastic pad that stays warm, I bought it in the chicken section of Fleet Farm. I used the MHP frame to create a cave over the top of that with a towel and the chicks seem to like it. They were all out of the cave and looking for breakfast when I got out there this morning. They make very little noise, just happy little peeps, so they must be doing OK.
Okay I will tell my parents about the heating pad.
 

SnootyHen

Songster
Apr 18, 2020
327
797
176
Illinois
My chicks are hatching at Meyer today and coming JUST a little farther than you to the south suburbs of Chicago (but I work in IN so I definitely know what a Hoosier is 😁 ). I called the post office last week to ask them what I can do to make it work the best. He said usually with live animals the hatchery will put my phone number on the outside of the package so they can call me and let me know it arrived and set it aside for me to come get rather than go on the truck. I asked him if I can leave that information for him in case it's not on the box and he said if I call once I have tracking info, leave it with my cell phone and they'll call me right when the chicks arrive so I can run over and get them.
 

RIR chicks

Songster
Sep 28, 2020
218
683
123
I just got 8 week-old chicks from a friend who ordered 20. She wanted a dozen and the neighbor wanted her to order some for him, only once they came in, he didn't want them anymore. I have them out in our barn (no livestock but chickens) with a Mamma-Heating-Pad and they are doing great. It was 46 degrees this morning.
Check out the Momma-Heating-Pad thread. It is getting huge, but the basic concepts are covered in the first few pages.
My heating pad got chewed by mice and no longer works, so I am using a "Pet Mat" heating pad. It is a hard plastic pad that stays warm, I bought it in the chicken section of Fleet Farm. I used the MHP frame to create a cave over the top of that with a towel and the chicks seem to like it. They were all out of the cave and looking for breakfast when I got out there this morning. They make very little noise, just happy little peeps, so they must be doing OK.
You put them in your barn can I put mine in our garage?
 

wyoDreamer

Free Ranging
Nov 10, 2010
5,217
8,221
501
NE Wisconsin
The garage would work, but does the garage have enough windows to give them natural light? Otherwise, you will need to give them light during the day.
What are you going to use as your brooder?
 

Spot1984

In the Brooder
Jun 17, 2020
26
22
23
Nebraska
Keep a heat lamp on them 24 hrs a day. Some advise a specific temp to keep the brooder at but the chicks will let you know what they want. If they are spread out all over the brooder then it is perfect temp but if they are all huddled under the heat lamp together they they are cold. If this happens keep an eye on them and lower the lamp.
 

U_Stormcrow

Songster
Jun 7, 2020
503
923
176
North FL Panhandle Region / Wiregrass
OK. Statistics. Every year, some body (often an idiot, but not always) finds their dried Christmas tree on fire from old light bulbs and a dried tree. Heat lamps and pine shavings are no different. Is it possible???? Yes. Is it likely??? NO.

if you feel safer/more comfortable, get a heating pad that can be left on 24/7 like a reptile warmer and a good thermostatic control for it, or a heating plate and a brood box big enough that your birds can get distance if it gets too hot, and get close if they get too cool. than make sure it has tall sides to help them avoid drafts (and stay in it).

I used a heat lamp and dusty straw - even worse than pine shavings - for my first two batches of chicks, then swapped to a heat plate. Not for reasons of safety, but because I was seeing 20+ degree temperature swings over the course of the day, and got sick of adjusting the lamp height.

Be vigilante, yes, but don't panic, and don't fixate. The stress isn't good for you, and hyper focus will increase the chances of you missing some other important factor.
 

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