OK, I know that if I waited until hubby built a coop I'd NEVER get any chicks. Soooooooo................after getting everything ready for a brooder, we went and bought my very first three chicks today!!! One Buff Orpington (3 wks old), one Barred Rock (3 wks old), and one Cuckoo Marans (5 wks old)! They will need a coop in a few weeks that will fly by, so he's got to get started now! hehehe They are SO CUTE! They seemed a bit listless when we got home, but that was probably from the 90 minute drive back from the hatchery where I got them. That's the closest one I could find, but this way at least I know they are being raised in the same climate as where we are, so they should do fine. Once they were in the brooder a while and out of that little box, they rested a bit, then headed for the food, water, and chick gravel. I heard all sorts of peeps. I thought we were supposed to keep a heat lamp on them 24 hours a day for several weeks. I started out at 85 and then raised the lamp a bit to get it to about 82 where they seemed happier with it and stayed about in the middle (the lamp is shining down into one end). I planned to lower it 5 degrees each week until their temperature and the outside temperature match. They're in the kitchen, but my kitchen usually isn't very warm. The wood stove we heat the house with is in the dining room. Now I've read that the heat lamp is only supposed to be on over night. Does anyone know if that's true? Anyway, we have a lid on the storage bin with a hole cut out and hardware cloth over it so the can can't get to them. I'm sure the two little dogs we have startle them when the barking starts, but since that's usually in the next room, they will get used to hearing them. Since the brooder is on top of the drier, the dogs can't get to them either. I hope someone knows if the heat lamp is to remain on constantly until it's down to about 65 or not. Namaste!