My chicks are coming - a couple of ??

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by photo chick, May 5, 2009.

  1. photo chick

    photo chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2009
    Essex, VT
    My 6 chicks will be here in 2 days. I just went to the farm store today to buy what I'd need to start them out...
    food and water containers
    chick starter
    vitamins/electrolytes for water
    a book!
    250 watt bulb

    I realize that I have forgotten bedding. After searching here for awhile, I have yet to find what the "best" bedding for chicks is. Anyone recommend anything? I keep hearing about spraddle - I'd love to avoid it.

    I also didn't buy grit, do I need it?

    I have a couple of different things to use as a brooder but none with a top. I was going to use a plastic swimming pool but I don't have a spot for it that's safe from the cat. My other option is a tupperware tub. I can fashion a wire lid for it so it's safe.

    I'd love input.
  2. astatula

    astatula Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 19, 2009
    Pine pellets, not shavings is best for the bedding. The chicks sometimes eat the shavings and that will bind them up and kill them.

    Your chick starter food has everything you need for the chicks in it, no need for grit. The Vitamins are great to start them out, and maybe the first day they arrive you might add a teaspoon of sugar to a gallon of their water for an energy booster. I also put CLEAN marbles in the water trough so the dummies don't drown themselves during the first week, then I take them out.

    Brooders are tough only because these girls/guys grow very fast and are able to escape their home-made-type brooder within a few weeks. You will need a cover and a safe place away from any predator for awhile.

    The first 3-5 days are critical for good healthy birds to thrive. Watch their butts for pasty's, see if they are eating and drinking, and they should be eating alot and drinking.

    Make sure you set-up your brooder and test it for temperature stability and placement of the feeder and waterer so the feed and water don't get hot from the lamp in their placement. There should be enough room in the brooder to let the chicks cool down if they get too hot, so check to see if that is possible by moving your hand around the brooder floor to find cool spots and warm spots.

    That's all I could think of maybe someone else has some pearls to share.
  3. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Many people use shavings without problems, just use pine or aspen, NOT cedar.
    For the very first day sometimes people use paper towels so that the chicks learn to eat the food instead of the shavings. Newspaper is too slick, it causes spraddle leg.
  4. MoodyChicken

    MoodyChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 15, 2009
    Northern California
    I use paper towel for the first two weeks, then I switch to pine shavings. If they're brooder is slippery, I'll put some kind of rubber lining (like a bath tub mat or that weird puffy stuff you put underneath things to keep it from slipping) under the shavings.
  5. sparkles2307

    sparkles2307 Terd of Hurtles

    we got our bantys from the feed store, so they must be a week old, but we use sunflower hulls and that is working really well.

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