SiriSchantz

In the Brooder
Oct 28, 2018
23
32
38
I have 2 silkie chicks from ideal poultry arriving friday. I have a brooder set up in a 5SqFt cardboard box lined with paper towels. I have a chick feeder with medicated starter feed and a waterer that they wont be able to fall into, and a heat 50w heat lamp. Here are my questions:

-when should i add a roost? Can i give them a low roost (1-2in) from the start?

-at what age (in days) should i switch them to pine shaving bedding?

-should i expect the chicks to be friendly with each other? If not what can i do to help?

-I dont think ideal poultry vaccinates their chicks. Is there somewhere i could take them to be vaccinated? Is it necessary?

-should i get emerency supplies now for incase one gets sick or hurt? If so what?

-ive never had chickens before but i have a dog and parakeets. Could my chicks get sick/parasites from other animals in the house? Because i havent had chickens before and no one living near me has, will my chicks be safer from illness?
 

DobieLover

Easily distracted by chickens
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
29,438
235,587
1,612
NY Southern Tier
My Coop
My Coop
Hello and welcome to BYC! :frow Glad you joined.

Don't be so nervous! You'll do fine.

You can read this article to get started:
https://www.backyardchickens.com/ar...first-60-days-of-raising-baby-chickens.47691/

Do you have a thermometer for your brooder? It should be about 90-95 degrees in temp at the height of the chicks backs. Did you mean you have a 250W heat lamp? 50W doesn't generate a lot of heat. Aim the lamp at one end of the brooder only. That way the chicks can get out from under the heat if they need to.

When the chicks arrive, make sure you dip their beaks in the water so they know where to find it. You should add Save-A-Chick or some other equivalent electrolytes to the water for the first 3 days too to help them recover from the shipping stresses.

One of my chicks had been pecked a little on the top of her beak during shipping. She was clearly a less lively than the others. After cleaning off the blood and putting a little dot of Blukote on the wound, I supported her with scrambled eggs with a small amount of sugar mixed in for the first three days. She recovered beautifully. She is now third in command in the current flock.

You can put a small roost in after about a week. I made one with some scrap lumber I had. The roost part was an old 2x2 and it was about 3-4 inches off the ground.

I put pine shavings in the brooder on day 3.

I also left the lights on 'round the clock for the first 3 days so they could eat whenever they wanted. My heat lamp was ceramic so it did not emit light.

Chicks are typically vaccinated as day olds so I think it is too late to vaccinate them.

Here is a good article for first aid kits for chickens:
https://www.backyardchickens.com/ar...essential-supplies-and-how-to-use-them.64830/

I wouldn't want the chicks around the parakeets because wild birds can spread disease to chickens so I'd be nervous about the keets. I wouldn't want my brooder in the house either! Chicks can make a terrible mess for be such little things!
 

Dona Worry

Crowing
Jul 5, 2018
1,526
6,918
377
Vermont
Congratulations on your new babies!

-when should i add a roost? Can i give them a low roost (1-2in) from the start?
I gave my chicks a sock-covered water bottle full of water as a roost, not directly under the light but off to the side, and they like to sleep on it, but I don't think you need to. You say your brooder is 5 square feet-- that seems to be a mathematical impossibility. Do you mean each wall is five feet?
-at what age (in days) should i switch them to pine shaving bedding?
When your towels get gross, take them out and put shavings down.
-should i expect the chicks to be friendly with each other? If not what can i do to help?
Just 2 small chicks should be fine with plenty of space. They might peck at each other's eyes at first, and I am pretty sure all chicks do that.
-I dont think ideal poultry vaccinates their chicks. Is there somewhere i could take them to be vaccinated? Is it necessary?
I wouldn't take them anywhere, shipping is stressful enough.
-should i get emerency supplies now for incase one gets sick or hurt? If so what?
Get some electrolytes-- Save-a-Chick is one-- and some poultry nutri-drench before they arrive, and have some hard boiled eggs ready to go. Have the electrolytes mixed up and ready when they get there, and a drop of the nutri- drench as you take them out of the box wouldn't be a bad idea either.
-ive never had chickens before but i have a dog and parakeets. Could my chicks get sick/parasites from other animals in the house? Because i havent had chickens before and no one living near me has, will my chicks be safer from illness?[/QUOTE]
Just keep the chicks isolated from your other animals, and wash your hands well, and I'm sure they'll be fine!
 

Melky

Spring has sprung!
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
4,154
20,245
962
Edgewood, KY
I will just welcome you because you already received pretty good advice.
fullsizeoutput_75a.jpeg
 

Melky

Spring has sprung!
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
4,154
20,245
962
Edgewood, KY
You can call a vet local to see if they would vaccinate for Marek's Disease for you usually done on day one of age. But not sure if they would. Just call and ask. I only work with hatcheries that vaccinate. I also fed 20% starter grower medicated feed for first 8 weeks per hatchery recommendation to protect my birds against coccidiosis and then switched to 18% starter grower feed unmedicated. I also use organic Natures Best here! Thats a personal choice. I did use sav-a-chick electrolytes for first 5 days in water mix as directed. I made up a small batch at a time and saved the powder as it makes a gallon at a time and that is a lot. I made 32 oz at a time left in closed container on counter and refilled as they needed. After first five days I used sav-a-chick electrolytes once a week till 18 weeks per hatchery recommendation. Use in times of stress as well or hot summers for hydration. This perked my birds up right from the start and put them on good growth pattern. I used roosting bar low as you suggested and moved it up to 5 inches of height and one inch wide within first week. I also made a play swing for them. Lots of fun. You can see my article on this if want. I also used brooder light with 250 red light bulb as sold applied heat on one side of brooder so they can move from cool to warm as needed. I weaned by 5 degrees every 5-7 days till at 65-70 degrees then light off and when feathered out went out to the big coop. Usually 4-5 weeks if really cold may keep in till 6-8 weeks. My brooder was inside in my husbands office till went out. Make sure netting covering top because they get flighty when they find use of the wings. I also placed marbles in the water fountain so they could not fall in and drown till at least several weeks old and displayed good balance and stayed out of it. They did well! Yours hopefully will too.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/diy-chicken-swing-for-the-brooder.74466/
 

Sg4

Songster
Aug 7, 2017
63
101
117
Welcome! Dont be nervous! You will find that there are a lot of different ways to raise your chickens, and a lot of opinions! Inside vs outside, to medicate or not, etc.
Chickens need plenty of space (as they grow), access to heat, lots of food and fresh water. Most important, they need your love ❤
Your babies will let you know what they need. If they are too hot, too cold, hungry, etc. They will cheap at you like crazy! They are mostly quiet when they are content.
As long as those basics are covered, you will continue to learn as you go. When a question comes up just jump in the forum and ask. There is a wealth of knowledge on here and everyone is happy to help! I knew nothing when I started, and over a year later, I'm amazed at how much I've learned and how easy it is.
One suggestion on the vaccine part, if the chicks are vaccinated, the medicated feed will negate the vaccination. So you might want to give them a call and ask? It's a one or the other type thing. Either vaccinate or give medicated feed. Not both.
Have fun! And full warning...you will end up with twice as many as you thought because this is an addiction! Lol so build a coop bigger than you think you need.
 

bya1305

Chirping
Oct 27, 2018
27
70
56
Fresno, CA
I have 2 silkie chicks from ideal poultry arriving friday. I have a brooder set up in a 5SqFt cardboard box lined with paper towels. I have a chick feeder with medicated starter feed and a waterer that they wont be able to fall into, and a heat 50w heat lamp. Here are my questions:

-when should i add a roost? Can i give them a low roost (1-2in) from the start?

-at what age (in days) should i switch them to pine shaving bedding?

-should i expect the chicks to be friendly with each other? If not what can i do to help?

-I dont think ideal poultry vaccinates their chicks. Is there somewhere i could take them to be vaccinated? Is it necessary?

-should i get emerency supplies now for incase one gets sick or hurt? If so what?

-ive never had chickens before but i have a dog and parakeets. Could my chicks get sick/parasites from other animals in the house? Because i havent had chickens before and no one living near me has, will my chicks be safer from illness?


Hey Siri, it's really funny that I'm a first time chicken raiser as well, AND my chicks from Ideal Poultry are arriving Friday! Apparently we ordered from the same hatch date. Since I'm new to the chicken world as well all I can contribute is that with Ideal you had to click the little cog symbol next to the chick you were ordering and select marek's vaccination. Post some pictures of your chicks when they come in!
 

bya1305

Chirping
Oct 27, 2018
27
70
56
Fresno, CA
Hey Siri, just wanted to give you an update. My order from Ideal came a day early and I just picked them up a little while ago. They were all alive and chirping, including the extra males they sent, I was pleasantly surprised they all made it. They have been in their pen for about 45 min now and seem to be doing well. I dipped each of their beaks in the water bowl as I was transferring each one from shipping box to brooder. I have a feed bowl but I also spread some feed over the paper towels and I let them peck out of my hand for a bit too. At this point they have all found the food and water and are getting used to their new environment.

20181101_111332.jpg 20181101_111339.jpg 20181101_111343.jpg 20181101_120625.jpg
 

MANNA-PRO

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