I Have a Bunch of Chickens...and...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Hokiechick, Jan 27, 2011.

  1. Hokiechick

    Hokiechick Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 27, 2011
    right now they are in two separate plastic containers with heat lamps. The first container has 20 chickens and the other one has 11 because they are a week apart in age. The older ones are a week and one day old and the others are two days old. I'm quickly running out of space! We have 11 RIR, 10 Delawares, and the other 5 are roosters that I have no idea what breed they are because they were sent as extras for warmth. So, I have a couple of questions:

    - As these chicks grow, what would be the ideal thing to use as a brooder? They are going to outgrow these plastic totes pretty soon I'm afraid and being January I don't know where I could find a large enough kiddy pool to stick them in.

    - About how old can they be before we put them all in the coop? It's still chilly here and probably won't get to be decent until maybe March....

    - What to do with the extra roosters? They are really cute, and I've asked around to see if anyone needs/wants one, but I'm not having luck. I had ordered two roosters with my original order, but I don't think I need seven. Won't the roosters end up killing each other being that there are so many? I'm trying to brainstorm a way I can care for these little guys until they are old enough to cull for food...without having them kill each other.
  2. dirtsaver

    dirtsaver Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 20, 2010
    Northern Kentucky
    First off,try to find a way to mark all or part of them for identification. At least mark the ones you plan on getting rid of. Then go to an appliance store and see if you can get a large cardboard box that will hold them all or two boxes and fasten them side-by-side and cut a pass-through between them. That's what we did last spring for ours.

    The roos may not get along but several folks here have had multiple roos with few issues when they were raised together.

    And by the way...[​IMG] [​IMG]

  3. Minniechickmama

    Minniechickmama Senora Pollo Loco

    Sep 4, 2009
    Yes, [​IMG] and you are right, they will outgrow that space and fast. A box, like dirtsaver said, or you could make a wood, knock-down type pen. I did this and it worked well with linoleum in the bottom.

    You pulled the same thing as I usually do, put the cart before the horse.
    Here are a couple of questions though, where do you live? How cold does it get in your garage? Do you have a space in a basement that would work for them?

    I live in Minnesota and have the problem of a warm enough space for when they need more space. I kept mine in the basement last year, but the smell was not good. i am going to make a brooder in the garage, where it is cold, but it will be raised and have insulation on the bottom to keep the bottom of it from getting too cold. Then I will cover most of the top and and have two heat lamps. I am sure this will suffice until my brooder house is finished. The sides will need to be at least 12" and something over them until they are about 6 weeks old. They can jump out and will.

    Good luck.
  4. nwfl

    nwfl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 4, 2011
    Northwest Florida
    Wow, you are certainly in a pickle. Boxes, lids, a couple more heat lamps, newspaper, compost pile and assistants. Delawares are wonderful. I had two wonderful packing peanut roos that I didn't plan on but kept. Let them grow out a bit in a pen of their own so you can see their qualities. I haven't had roosters kill each other in a grow out pen after 6 months of good food and plenty of space.
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2011
  5. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Alright, we won't ask "what were you thinking!!!" [​IMG][​IMG]

    Get creative in a hurry. I use a utility trailer to brood in. 5x8. 28" sides. They outgrow in at about 5 weeks. They are very active and busy.
    Screw panels of plywood together into a couple of big boxes. $8 a sheet for OSB, or wafer board at a Big Box store. Buy 5 sheets and make two large, 4 by 8 "boxes" with the bottoms out of 2 sheets and sides out of the other three sheets. You have no time to spare.

    Oh, and you do have the coup ready, right? [​IMG]

  6. ARose4Heaven

    ARose4Heaven Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 16, 2009
    Flippin, AR
    Do you have an extra bathroom? Some could use the tub.
  7. Hokiechick

    Hokiechick Out Of The Brooder

    Jan 27, 2011
    Haha! Yes, we did get a lot, huh? My husband promised lots of people eggs, and thought- well...we might as well get a bunch of chickens!!!

    We're building the coop now- it'll hold about 30 chickens according to the plans, and should be completed this weekend. It's still pretty cold outside though right now (we live in Virginia), so I don't think there is any way we could put them outside until maybe March. Right now I have the older chicks in my basement and the newer ones are upstairs.

    Thank you all for the warm welcome and the advise. I will see if my husband and I can get some supplies to build a bigger brooding pen for them...I have plenty of room in my basement for them to stay so that's not a problem at all. [​IMG]

    Thanks again!
  8. Highlander

    Highlander Tartan Terror

    Oct 1, 2008
    I use an old baby playpen/travel cot. Easy to pick up cheap from CL or similar. They work great for me.

  9. justtoni44

    justtoni44 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 13, 2010
    What works for me is peg board.
    I went to home depot.had them cut an 8ft. piece into 4, 2 ft. pieces.
    I put them together with slip ties.............and have a tarp on the bottom, then the bedding.
    I use plastic fencing for the top when they start flying.........
    $11.00 for the peg board....$8.00 for the fencing.
    I put a board across the top to hole the lamp taking pains to be certain it coud not fall into the brooder.
    I like this because I can take the brooder apart for easy storage when needed.
    Also, I put my three and four week olds together about a week ago..
    I did it during the day so I could watch them carefully.
    The older ones were a little testy right at first but no one was hurt.
    By the end of the day.they were all pals.
    Now the younger ones cuddle up to the bigger ones when they sleep.
    It is sweet.
    Good luck [​IMG]
  10. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Of course, if you get the coop finished and have electricity, you can finish them out there, under lamps, which would be my choice.

    Having 30 chickens indoors in a week or two is going to produce an unholy amount of nasty smells and DUST!!! As in having a drywall crew sawing sheet-rock in your home everyday. True!!

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