Mixing day old chicks from several locations...is this a good idea?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by OilyChick, Jun 5, 2016.

  1. OilyChick

    OilyChick Out Of The Brooder

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    I will be getting chicks in about a month. I have found a selective breeder (Claborn farms) with very healthy flock that I will be driving 4 hrs to pick up 10 day olds, standard-size from them. They do not have bantams which I'm planning to order 5 by mail from another source. AND I really wanted some colored eggs in my basket so I'm thinking of getting some EE's or Americaunas from a local breeder. Probably only 5. So a total of 15 full-size and 5 bantams.

    Is this a good idea? Should I isolate them into separate pens that are close to each other or can I let them intermingle since they will be straight out of incubator? Or at least only 2-3 days old. Should I be concerned about disease since coming from several locations?

    Yes, it will be tricky to get all of this timing down but planning to get the out-of-towners first, then locals, with the mail order bantams arriving soon after.

    I could wait till spring for the bantams and EE's but I'm impatient!! and if I have to do all the work of feeding and letting in and out all winter why not get enough for all the eggs and chickens I want to have in the first place?

    I'm planning to keep all of them in my newly built 9x12 coop with a Mama Heating Pad...I will have two of the MHP's ... for warm ups. Since it will be July, high humidity and 90's temps here in NE Texas I'm thinking they will be okay to start immediately inside the coop. I will keep a very close eye on them the first few days to be sure they are eating/drinking well. Also planning to feed fermented feed and immune boosting water from the start.

    I hope this make sense!!! Sorry, it is such a lengthy post! I am truly thankful for all of your advice!

    I'm learning SO MUCH on this site! Totally dependent on y'all for coop design ideas and brooding info.
     
  2. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    IMO I would start out with a see thru divider in the brooder - mainly because the bantams will be a lot smaller. Since they are coming from different sources, it makes sense not to let them mingle until you are sure they are all healthy.

    But driving 4 hours!! I got my baby chicks less than 5 minutes away from home - good luck with the voyage.
     
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  3. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener True BYC Addict

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    If I were in your shoes, I'd hold off on the bantams. Simply because they will be smaller, and more delicate. Or, if it's an option, start the bantams a week to 10 days before you get your LF breeds. As far as mixing chicks from different sources, it's not best practice, but it's done all the time. Depends on your tolerance for risk.
     
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  4. OilyChick

    OilyChick Out Of The Brooder

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    I was wrong...it's only 3 hrs...

    And yes, I have signed up for the crazy chicken lady advanced course [​IMG]

    I just placed my order today and hubby is willing to drive that far so I can get quality chickens. I could have them shipped but don't want them to suffer stress in these hot temps. I read on another thread that someone else ordered chicks from a hatchery only 300 miles from their home. When they were 2 days late she traced the route they had taken and they had gone over 1000 miles!

    I've looked at several local breeders and I'm not impressed with the health or quality of life of their birds. There are probably some better ones out there but just haven't found them yet. I takes a while to break into the local chicken network.

    Thanks for the tip on the see-through divider sunflour! That's kind of what I had in mind. Near each other, can see... but no touching.
     
  5. Chilly Lizard

    Chilly Lizard Just Hatched

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    when you get them make sure to put them in a small cardboard box, for about ten mins keep them in there, also talk to them while they are in there so they start to know your voice. Then you should be good![​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  6. OilyChick

    OilyChick Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for the tip Lazy Gardener! I'm getting really conflicting info on the bantams anyways. And not possible for me to start them earlier as we will be on vacation.

    I was interested in Old English Game. Most of the reviews of the breed on here are very positive...everyone seems to think they are very friendly. And my interest developed from a local breeder who handed me the sweetest OEG rooster to hold. He was very calm and let me pet him more easily than my diva housecat!

    BUT most other websites say they are very aggressive, flighty and not for beginners.

    So I think I will take your advice and hold off for now. I *kind of* like silkies...they seem to be very sweet (good pets for the grands) and good for brooding fertile eggs, but I just can't get past their looks. They remind me of a kitten with wings and long legs...well only two...and with a beak, but you know what I mean.

    I might go ahead and get the local Americaunas/EE's. I'm going to look at them this next weekend. If her flock doesn't look healthy I will pass on them too for now.

    Y'all are making it much easier to decide what to do and how to handle my first timer flock :)
     
  7. OilyChick

    OilyChick Out Of The Brooder

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    I can't wait to hear them talk to me Chilly Lizard! And yes, I'm hoping to get them to recognize my voice. I might not enjoy them as much after 3 hours of riding with them peeping all the way home though ...[​IMG]
     

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