New Indiana Momma with Questions!!

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by fitfarmgirl, Mar 12, 2017.

  1. fitfarmgirl

    fitfarmgirl New Egg

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    We bought our first acre of land last year and knew immediately we wanted chickens. This year we made that happen! Last weekend we bought our first batch of chicks. we have three barred rocks, three Rhode Island Reds and three Amerucana's. The Rhode Island Reds are almost 4 weeks old and I'm worried about their living situation. Naturally it is back to freezing outside so we can't move them to their coop or even to the garage yet. but I'm afraid this isn't enough? They are jumping up my arm every chance they get to try and get out and keep hitting the screen. What else can I do for them??[​IMG]
     
  2. peopleRanimals2

    peopleRanimals2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Congrats on your new farm and flock! From your picture, it looks like a bigger living space would be a good idea.You could put them in a dog crate with cardboard a couple inches high all around the sides, and add small perches (A small ladder or perch made out of strong sticks can work perfectly)
    Are the different breeds of chicks separated? If you want to keep them together as adults, they should get to know each other as chicks. Also, are they all roughly the same age? On warm days you can take them outside on little adventures, as long as they are supervised. :) That was something that my chicks used to love. Spending a lot of time letting them perch on your knees and shoulders is a great way to get them to do it as adults, too, so that's another fun way to give them something to do. You could also give them activities such as giving them treats, (Anything harder than hard boiled egg should be supplemented with chick grit, though)
    I'd love to hear how it works out!
    -M
     
  3. fitfarmgirl

    fitfarmgirl New Egg

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    Our thought was to move them to a large dog crate in the garage but with the highs in the 30s this week we are having a hard time getting it above 60 in there. I am going to try taking them out today to play in the garage with me for a little and see if they can handle the temps for a short time, is that safe? And the other 6 are all together because they are 2 weeks younger and they told me not to combine them until the younger girls were bigger...I now realize I should have searched elsewhere for RIRs that were younger...My plan is to graduate the big girls to the garage crate then the little girls to the bigger tote, then assuming the weather cooperates the big girls go to the new 8x8 coop and the little ones go in the dog grate in the coop to introduce them. Would that work okay??

    And this is probably a silly question but if you can't go outside to play, do you just play with them in your house? It freaks my husband out but I don't know what else to do and I feel like they hate the tote so much /:

    Thank you so much for helping me!!!
     
  4. peopleRanimals2

    peopleRanimals2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Can you send pictures of the chicks? If they have feathers, the colder temperatures shouldn't be as much of an issue, but if they don't have enough feathers, then they can't regulate their body temperature enough to stay warm.
    It is smart to keep the younger ones separate from the older ones, but if you have the space, one thing you could do to get them used to each other is move the older chicks to a dog crate, but keep it next to the younger ones' bin. That way, they will hear each other and maybe see each other, which will make introducing them as they get older much easier. Then, you could either keep the older chicks there or move them to your garage when the weather warms up. Then the rest of your plan sounds good, but you want to make sure that there is room in your coop for the dog crate where it won't be under the perches, so the smaller ones won't get pooped on at night. [​IMG][​IMG]
    A tip for introducing the chicks into the coop is to keep them in just the coop part for a couple days, then let them out into your run or yard, whichever you choose to do.

    It's fine to play with them inside, as long as you keep them in a safe area. (For example, away from unfriendly animals or high places where they might fall.) The only downside is that they are likely to make a mess wherever they go. :) We had ours the laundry room part of our basement, with a baby gate set up so that my dog couldn't get in. There, I would just take out a couple at a time to let them practice flying short distances, such as from my knees to my hand. They can get pretty high! When we had chicken wire over the bin that we kept them in, if we took it off they would fly up and out of the bin to sit on me! :)
    In the dog crate, you can put long sticks across the inside so that they are supported by the horizontal bars of the crate, at varying heights to let them practice perching. Taking them out inside is a great way to get them used to different temperatures, socialize them to you, and just have fun watching them! I hope this helps, and feel free to ask anything else. [​IMG] Have fun with your flock! Looking forward to hearing how it works,
    -M
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2017
    1 person likes this.
  5. peopleRanimals2

    peopleRanimals2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Also, you were right about not putting them together yet. The smaller ones shouldn't go in with the older ones until they are roughly the same size, or else the older ones could unintentionally hurt the smaller ones while establishing a pecking order. Eventually, though, they will get along very well and you'll have a happy, healthy flock. :)
     
  6. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

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    [​IMG] Greetings from Kansas and [​IMG]! Pleased you joined our community!
     
  7. peopleRanimals2

    peopleRanimals2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    fitfarmgirl Did you find a solution? ;) Keep us posted!
     
  8. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    G’Day from down under fitfarmgirl [​IMG] Welcome Back!

    As you have already received some great advice, I will just wish you and your little cuties all the best.

    You might want to also pop in and say hello on your local thread: https://www.backyardchickens.com/f/26/where-am-i-where-are-you ‘Find your State’s thread.

    I hope you enjoy being a BYC member. There are lots of friendly and very helpful folks here so not only is it overflowing with useful information it is also a great place to make friends and have some fun.

    If you would like to share pictures and stories of your flock, you have come to the right place. BYC’ers never tire of these and do not back away slowly or commence eye rolling when the photo album or home videos come out [​IMG]
     
  9. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Out to pasture
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  10. fitfarmgirl

    fitfarmgirl New Egg

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    @peopleRanimals2

    Yes thank you so much for your response!! We got busy this afternoon roofing the coop and cleaning the girls and the bathroom they live in (:) I'm attaching pictures of both. The coop should be finished next weekend!!

    Currently they are all still in the bathroom setup but we are working on lowering the temp for the rir so they can make the move to the garage. Introducing them to the bigger dog crate seemed to make them much happier. The floor space is almost the same but it is much taller for them to take flight. I played with the "cream beaked" one (we haven't named them yet...) because she is the one always charging to get out. And she was happy to sit on my shoulder and in my lap but quickly wanted to venture away but it made me to nervous. Her sisters will let me pet them but I couldn't coax them out freely still.

    Tonight I went to clean their water one last time and my cream beaked girl immediately jumped on my hand and tried to climb up and out each time there was a gap under the wire. Is that normal? The others seem much more content but she really acts like she hates it [​IMG][​IMG][/IMG][​IMG]
     

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