New Chicks - A couple of questions from a newbie


In the Brooder
11 Years
Mar 17, 2008
Hi all -

I'm a total newbie - never had chickens before, but am really excited. I have a few questions:

I have 2 Orpingtons, just one week old today. They seem to be doing well - getting bigger, eating and drinking, but not exactly sure if their poop is "normal". It ranges from runny brown to kind of chunky. They are eating a chick crumble from Murray McMurray, along with electrolyte/vitamin added to their water. Don't know if it's just the stress of being on3 week old? They are active and alert and not at all lethargic.

I put pine shavings down a couple of days ago - they seem to love it, kicking it up and pecking at it. Is this ok? Maybe this is what is giving them not firm stool? Most of the shavings just fall through the wire cage bottom, but they do seem to like it.

Last question - I'm planning on adding 2 more chicks this Friday - is that ok to watch them closely and let the 4 be in the same brooding cage? Any thoughts on a golden or silver laced Wyandotte, or a Partridge Rocks? I have a 4 year old, who is pretty animal savvy, but I would probably prefer a more docile chicken.

thank you all for your suggestions.

ozark hen

Living My Dream
15 Years
Apr 4, 2007
Mansfield, MO
welcome to our addiction which seems to be yours now?
First off if your chicks are that old have you had them since they were a day old? If so they no longer need to be on electrolytes, shavings are fine, do not put the new chicks in with the older chicks until they have time to acclimate to each other. Can you divide the cage? if so that would be great. They need to see/hear each other for a week or two then they can be put together but not in a small area. They need room to move about and I don't know the size of this cage you are using.
I will let someone else you guide you with the breeds. Glad to have you.

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