Lots of Q's Regarding Chicks!

Impoz

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 19, 2013
8
0
9
Hello,
I got my adorable baby bantams about last week. When I got them they never told me their exact age, but their wings are completely fethered in right now, and they are already jumping out of a 15 inch brooder so im guessing that they are about two weeks old.

I am new to raising baby chickens, and I have important question that need to be answered. Help is much appreciated.

My questions:

  1. I am feeding the chicks grit and 5-6 small mealworms along with their chick food everyday. Is it okay to feed the chicks grit and worms at this age? How many worms should they be able to eat, and how often?
  2. One of my chicks is getting larger than the others, and the runt is sometimes unable to eat while the other 3 chicks overpower him and hog the food. What can i do about this?
  3. I really want to be able to tame the chickens, so that they are more friendely towards humans. How can I tame the chicks?
  4. They eat the pine shavings and kick them everywhere. Can I keep them on paper towels?
  5. Why wont they eat boiled egg yolk...?

Thank you very much in advance for the help!
 

sumi

Rest in Peace 1980-2020
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Jun 28, 2011
39,154
26,091
1,302
welcome-byc.gif


Congrats on getting your first chicks! You're right, bantam chicks are adorable.

1. It is o.k. to feed them mealworms and grit at this age. Remember in nature mom will run around with her chicks and feed them whatever she finds, bugs included! I can't tell you exactly how many mealworms they can eat, but as long as you don't over do it and their main diet still consists on chick food they should be fine.

2. I think you should feed the runty chick separate at least twice a day. Say in the mornings and again in the evenings and make sure it has a full crop before letting it lose with the others again. I think you can give that one an extra worm or two now and then for a protein boost to help it keep up with the others :) If you're not doing it already you can add a splash of organic, unfiltered ACV (apple cider vinegar) to their drink water. This will help them absorb the nutrients in their food and give them a general boost.

3. Spent time with them. Talk to them, cuddle them, hand feed them treats. Let them associate you with good things.

4. Yes. You can place the paper towels over the pine shavings and after a week try and put them directly on the shavings again and see what they do.

5. Because it's something new and strange! Keep offering it to them and encourage them by dropping bits of it in front of them, like a mother hen would do. They're curiosity will get the better of them soon.
 

Impoz

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 19, 2013
8
0
9
welcome-byc.gif


Congrats on getting your first chicks! You're right, bantam chicks are adorable.

1. It is o.k. to feed them mealworms and grit at this age. Remember in nature mom will run around with her chicks and feed them whatever she finds, bugs included! I can't tell you exactly how many mealworms they can eat, but as long as you don't over do it and their main diet still consists on chick food they should be fine.

2. I think you should feed the runty chick separate at least twice a day. Say in the mornings and again in the evenings and make sure it has a full crop before letting it lose with the others again. I think you can give that one an extra worm or two now and then for a protein boost to help it keep up with the others :) If you're not doing it already you can add a splash of organic, unfiltered ACV (apple cider vinegar) to their drink water. This will help them absorb the nutrients in their food and give them a general boost.

3. Spent time with them. Talk to them, cuddle them, hand feed them treats. Let them associate you with good things.

4. Yes. You can place the paper towels over the pine shavings and after a week try and put them directly on the shavings again and see what they do.

5. Because it's something new and strange! Keep offering it to them and encourage them by dropping bits of it in front of them, like a mother hen would do. They're curiosity will get the better of them soon.
Thank you very much. I am giving them 3 worms each everyday at the moment. I'm thinking about getting a bigger brooder because they are jumping out of their current one.

Are strawberries o.k for 2 week chicks? Thanks again.
 

sumi

Rest in Peace 1980-2020
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Jun 28, 2011
39,154
26,091
1,302
This is the brooder space requirements, just to give you an idea:

Up to 2 weeks: 0.5 sq ft per chick
2-4 weeks: 1 sq ft per chick
4-8 weeks: 2.5 sq ft per chick
Over 8 weeks: 4 sq ft per chick

It's a good idea to cover the brooder to stop them jumping out, but use something like mesh, so you don't compromise the air flow and trap the heat and poo fumes in there.

Strawberries? I'll eat them myself or turn them into jam! LOL Here's some ideas for good treats for chicks:

https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/181429/good-treats-for-baby-chicks

I give mine spinach, scrambled egg with sweetcorn and a little cooked rice now and then. And of course any edible bug I find around the house and garden like moths, crickets and grasshoppers. Watch out for earthworms as they can carry other types of worm's eggs.
 

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