New Chick owner needs help!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by meeerylou, May 16, 2009.

  1. meeerylou

    meeerylou Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 10, 2008
    Great info. here
    Readers, PLEASE Help below.

    I had 3 chickens for 1 yr. but my dog (who was on Prednesone) killed them last week, so I went to Tractor Supply Co. and got chicks. I wanted Golden Comets, and got 4, but 2 died and TSC ran out of Golden Comets and I got ONE Leghorn.

    Don't know what the 2 died of, but I was told they were all a couple of days old. After this, I got antibiotic powder to mix with their water, recommended by Tractor Supply Clerk. Is that necessary?

    2 of my chicks have outgrown and out-matured the third.
    This third chick has alot of spunk, but smaller, shorter wings, less, or no tail feathers, and a messy butt, caked w/feces.
    Shoud I take water and wash this chick's butt?

    #1 Biggest Question: When can I move them to "the big coop" with a dirt floor? (right now it's VERY damp)

    They are in a separate "pet cage" w/straw and hay sprinkled on the floor and a water and a food dish in separate corners.

    I'm afraid the dirt floor has "old poop" residue from the (deceased) previous chickens, even though I raked it out... the flooring is DAMP!! and has some residual hay/straw and bits of old cracked corn in it that I couldn't rake out.

    The Old Coop still has blue board and straw stuffed around it from winter. When should I remove that? Can I spread the straw around on the ground or must I get rid of it?

    These chicks are now a week old.

    Thanks a million!
    Meeery
     
  2. debilorrah

    debilorrah The Great Guru of Yap Premium Member

    You MUST remove the crust from the butt - it covers the vent and will kill the chick if not taken care of - warm damp wash cloth to moisten it and slowly and LIGHTLY remove it - do not pull it off as you may pull her insides out with it.

    Clean the coop floor throughly before putting any birds in there. The birds cannot go outside until fully feathered - unless day time temps are in the 90's. At night they need a heat lamp until fully feathered. Get rid of all old materials from the coop and start fresh. It is best to scrape up the top layer for dirt to get rid of all residue from the other birds.
     
  3. monathequeen

    monathequeen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 13, 2009
    Burlington KS
    Dear New Chick Owner,
    Congrats on your new babies. If they're only a week old, they should NOT be moved into the main coop with mature birds yet. They will kill them...(ie,starve them by not letting them eat or drink....and they will peck them until they bleed to death.) When you introduce a new flock into a already established flock, you have to do it gradually and only when the new birds are old enough and big enough to fend for themselves. I have raised babies inside my living room until they were almost two months old. then you can introduce them to the others. They will learn to fend for themselves gradually and all will be well. You can keep the babies together until then. If the old straw is moldy, Get rid of it. Mold can kill the birds. I always put down new straw once a week. Rake out all the old straw and create a compost pile for a garden. as long as the floor is free of wet mudd and mold, you can lay new straw on top of the dirt. Make sure you dont use HAY. Use straw only because the Hay molds faster and is not recommended for bedding with chickens.
    The other reason your one bird is smaller is maby she is a Bantom...Make sure the babies are getting Grower Starter food for healthy growth....then switch to layer food. I hope this helps and if you need any other advice, e-mail me....I have 8-hens, 1- Roo,5-ducks and a beautiful Cockatoo.....Good Luck.
     
  4. monathequeen

    monathequeen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 13, 2009
    Burlington KS
    Oh I forgot.....by all means, clean the butt area with just water and a wash cloth and try to get all the dry poop off the butt area. look to see if there is poop impacted inside. you may have to probe inside some to get the poop out. If she is impacted, and you dont intervine, she will die.
     
  5. meeerylou

    meeerylou Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 10, 2008
    I DO have more questions.

    How long on starter feed for chicks?
    (then onto regular Layer feed) ???

    Also, if I have no other chickens, just an empty coop and run, and I have scraped as much poop and hay out as I can, is a little going to hurt these young chicks??

    The "Hamster cage" I have them in seems to limit them so much.

    By "fully feathered" do you mean when their feathers are no longer yellow... and become their meant-to-be "adult" color?

    How long does that usually take??
     

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