I have 3 brooders and I'm getting baby chicks...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by lolita117, May 19, 2012.

  1. lolita117

    lolita117 Songster

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    I have 3 brooders and I'm getting baby day old chicks at the end of this month. How do you go about putting day old chicks under brooders? Do you feed and water the chicks first upon arrival and then place them in the care of the brooders?

    And what time of day would be best to place them under the brooding hen? Night, Morning, doesn't matter?

    Any and all information will be greatly appreciated. This is my first spring with grown hens and my first brooders. They have been brooding for 3 to 4 weeks now, and I wasn't worried about it (the loss in production) but it dawned on me that I could place some of the baby chicks under these brooders. I'm getting about 24 chicks, so I know I won't be able to place all them just under 3 hens, but a good number to each chicken would also help me out too. thanks in advance.
     
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité

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    Your hens would be able to take care of 8 chicks each. No problem! A guy I know went a bit crazy with his broodies, one hen ended up with 18 chicks. She managed. Just!
    A newborn chick won't need food or water for the first 2-3 days, but since you won't know exactly when they were born I'd say offer them some chick starter and water. The best time to put them under the hens is at night. Then the hens are relaxed and sleepy and they'll be happy to find chicks in the morning.
    Enjoy your babies!
     
  3. lolita117

    lolita117 Songster

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    That's wonderful new! 8 chicks a piece then I won't have to brooder them. I feed my flock Starter/grower right now. About 7 and 10 weeks ago I got chicks, and now they are all with the flock. So I have 25 adult chickens, 8 ten week old chicks, and 24 seven week old chicks. I shouldn't have any problem if these baby chicks are with there surrogate mothers right?
     
  4. sumi

    sumi Égalité

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    No, I don't think so. I usually keep my little ones and their moms separate for awhile until the chicks are strong, then I let them lose with the rest of the flock. The moms look out for the babies. I have found that the other chickens like pecking the babies, especially at feeding time, so I feed them separately.
    If I allow them my broodies usually lay 12 eggs before they sit and they usually hatch all 12 eggs. That seem to be the maximum they are comfortable with.
     
  5. StormyMoon

    StormyMoon Songster

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    all of my hens have raised between 15 and 20 chicks they hatched them selves my hens are thieves they take eggs from other hens and hord them all. But my hens are standard size not bantams. I think it depends on what kind you have?

    I just let them do what comes natural to them.

    Now this time I have 3 broodies also who have no eggs and are sitting on plastic eggs. I ordered 26 chicks and I will divide the babies among them. I have done this with my own chicks I have incubated and in the middle of the night while all is dark I would slip the chicks under the broody hen, wait and listen for sounds of stress usually they just settle in and snuggle up to mom and then I slip my hand under the hen and take away the plastic eggs.
     
  6. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Crowing

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    Your broodies should be able to handle 8 chicks each easy. How many you can stuff under them depends on their breed though. For example: my EE hen is maxed out at 7 chicks, I don't think I could squeeze another fluffy butt in there if I tried. My LF Cochin hen has 18 (OMG!) chicks, and I could probably give her a few more. She's a BIG girl! The most chicks one of my broodies (a BO) hatched is 23. She took care of them all and didn't loose a single one. I usually allow my hens to sit on their eggs in my broody duplex, or "brooplex" (stacked cages inside the coop) so no one gives them any unauthorized eggs. Once the chicks hatch, they stay in the cages until they have their feet under them (usually about 3-4 days), then I turn them out with the rest of the flock. The mamas do a good job taking care of them, and if they don't, I steal them away to the brooder and don't let those hens brood again. I prefer broody raised babies, no electricity, no integration issues, no extra feeding or watering trips....I could go on and on! Good luck!!!!
     
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  7. lolita117

    lolita117 Songster

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    Okay, thanks everybody. If I do put them with the brooders they will be with the whole flock. The whole point of even thinking about doing this, is to remove the hassle of extra work and space. I have a brooder, but I won't be able to separate 3 momas with babies from everybody else. It would be easier just to put them in the brooder. But I guess I can put them with the brooders and if they don't guard them well enough or others take extremes to peck I can always remove them from moma and put them in my brooder.

    My 3 brooders are a White Jersey Giant, a Black Star, and a leghorn mix. I might have another coming into brood. She's clucking like my brooders. (Which I noticed is totally different from their normal clucks). I checked my order again and my exact number is 23, so I will give the leghorn 7 and the others 8 a piece. I just hope they don't through in extra, then I'll have to brooder some regardless.
     
  8. StormyMoon

    StormyMoon Songster

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    Is it possible to just section off part of their coop ?
     
  9. lolita117

    lolita117 Songster

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    No, not really. See I have a 6X12 room in my coop, and that's were I keep my feed, pine shaving, and brooder, and I've cleaned out a space for raising baby chicks this spring when the grow out of the brooder until they are 6-8 weeks old, before I introduce them to my flock. The wall is made of chicken wire, so they can see each other and interact, but not hurt the young ones. Its just dirt floor. My whole coop is dirt floor. The babies make a real mess in that part and its hard keeping them confine to that space because basically I barricade that part off with pine shaving blocks.

    If I had to separate the mothers, I would just raise the babies in the brooder and them put them in that space until they are 6-8 weeks old and then put them with the big ones. I'm trying to eliminate the need of using this space, that I really need for storage. Right now, I have everything crammed in half of that 6X12 space.

    But that's why I put this question on here, because I need to know if its alright to put these babies with the brooders, with the whole flock or should I just go ahead and brooder them myself and do the whole process I've done 3 times already. I just figured it would also get the hens over their need to brood too.
     
  10. StormyMoon

    StormyMoon Songster

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