Im happy and excited to be here!

PairOFWings

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 25, 2014
29
4
26
Central Coast, California
Hello! Ive been lurking here for a while as I planned my big break into this fun new hobby! I finally got my chicks last weekend and they are all settled in and happy.

I live on the Central Coast in California and have plenty of space for the chickens I have always wanted. I am so excited to be here!

I got 4 chicks last weekend from the feed store (the most amazing feed store! The kind you can walk around in for ages because it's got everything you can ever imagine!). I arrived promptly as they opened to find a line of people waiting for chicks! I managed to get away with 2 Ameraucanas and 2 Silver Laced Wyandottes. Their birthday is today, 1 week old! :)

I have them all set up in their brooder in the office in my house and as they get bigger I may have to set them up in the garage with some cat-proof protection. They have a little roost which one of them has already started using, I am impressed! She does, however, fall asleep on it then promptly fall off. It's pretty cute.

I am convinced that one of my wyandottes is a boy, and Im trying to be patient and calm while I wait to see if I have hens, but am suffering from a fair amount of anxiety over having to find a place for him if he's not a hen. Oh the stress! I did visit the meat bird forum to take a look at culling myself.. and while I consider myself a pretty tough cookie, Im not sure if I could cull him myself. For this reason, they are not getting names yet! >.<

I am going with sand for my bedding after lots of research and enjoyed going to the local Rockery to find the right sand! The birds adore it and spend a lot of time bathing. They are a hoot to watch!

They dont care for my presence yet, which is a bummer, but I hope they warm up to me more as we get to know each other. I have offered them bits of strawberry from my hand, but they were not tempted... However a little bit after I left them, I heard lots of chirping so I peeked in on them and one was running around with strawberry in her mouth while the other chased.. omg the cuteness. :)

When should I begin holding them to get them used to my hand? I get such conflicting information.. Im a research junkie and that can sometimes be counter-productive to my search for answers and knowledge!


 

sumi

Égalité
Staff member
Premium member
8 Years
Jun 28, 2011
39,157
25,173
1,302
Tipperary, Ireland
Welcome to BYC
Glad you joined us! When you put your hand in the brooder, do it slowly and talk to them, so you don't startle them. Chicken predators like birds of prey come from above, so they'll be naturally scared of things approaching from there. Once your hand with the treat is in the brooder, just hold still for a minute or two. Let them come to you when they feel brave enough. Mealworms and other insects are great treats you can try and if you really want to see something cute and funny, toss a live cricket in there! Fingers crossed your suspected boy is a girl
 

PairOFWings

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 25, 2014
29
4
26
Central Coast, California
Mealworms and crickets are next on my list to pick up from the feed store! I have spent about an hour every night sitting next to their brooder just reading a book, talking to them and leaving my empty hand in their space.

I love seeing their little personalities! The blonde is a bully and the redhead is absolutely the pack leader.. she does everything first. One of my wyandottes pecks my hand every time I pick her up to check her bum.. fiesty!

How long do I have to worry about pastey butt? Im kind of paranoid about it and dont want to pick them up too much while they are still adjusting, but I dont want anyone to have a clogged vent!
 

gander007

Crowing
6 Years
Oct 9, 2013
15,521
1,311
446
South Western Death Valley, Ca.
Alright
great to have you joining the BYC flock





BYC has a very useful learning center



Wash your hands before you touch and wash again when you
finish touching your chicks .....

Try giving them some hard boiled egg just remove the shell
and mash with fork and serve now that is a kick and take
a photo as it is funny after the first bite .....



Enjoy your all your poultry ventures
 

Kelsie2290

Free Ranging
Premium member
8 Years
Feb 18, 2011
36,683
4,863
556
Ohio
Hello :frow and Welcome To BYC! Good luck with your new flock! You'e gotten some good advice above on working with your chicks.
Be sure to check out the BYC Learning Center, all kinds of nice articles on caring for your birds you might find helpful https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center there are several nice articles on taming/ training/socializing chicks you might like in the Raising Chicks section of it https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/hatching-eggs-and-raising-chicks
I pretty much start holding them right away (give shipped chicks a day or two to recover), patience is the key, a lot of short sessions every day... it is one reason I do like to start them with treats earlier than other people, if they have treats you can bribe them with (like the strawberry, just give them a bit for a couple of days, then when they know what it is and they want it, you can make them work for it). they do seem to tame easier.
 

sourland

Broody Magician
Premium member
10 Years
May 3, 2009
94,029
177,066
1,837
New Jersey
Welcome to BYC - Sumi's approach to new chicks is right on target. If their butts are clear so far, I doubt that you will have a problem with 'pasty butt'.
 
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TwoCrows

A Native Raven
Staff member
Premium member
9 Years
Mar 21, 2011
40,940
61,680
1,492
New Mexico, USA
My Coop
My Coop


Welcome to BYC!

And happy 1 week birthday for your babies!!



Yes, go slow with your new babies at first. As Sumi has said, chickens are preyed upon and coming down on them from a above can scare them. So scoop them up slowly, don't drop them. They will get used to you. You can get them out and onto the living room floor, carry them around the house, snuggle with them. This will tame them up and by the time they head out to the coop, they will have bonded with you. All this work will pay off with very sweet hens.

Enjoy your new babies!! They grow like weeds and pretty soon they will be laying you eggs. Welcome to our flock!
 
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PairOFWings

In the Brooder
5 Years
Apr 25, 2014
29
4
26
Central Coast, California
Thank you everyone for the welcome! This is such a great community!

My little ones are growing so fast.. I cant help but scrutinize every aspect of them to see if Ive got boys or girls.. So stressful! Ive been cuddling them one at a time in the evenings, but Im worried its not enough. I have a 1 year old son who runs around the house during the day so I dont really have much opportunity to take them out before he goes to bed at 6ish.

The weather is supposed to be amazing this weekend.. they will be 2 weeks old next Wednesday.. is it too early to take them outside in a big dog crate so they can poke and play in the grass?
 
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