New to forum and chickens and looking for support

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by lbartsch, Jul 3, 2011.

  1. lbartsch

    lbartsch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello all:

    My family and I just got our first chicks yesterday. Sadly, one of them died last night but the others seem to be doing fine (see my post in the Emergencies/Diseases forum for more info). We are brand new and totally inexperienced in this hobby and hoping this forum will help answer all our silly questions. Firstly, I want to make sure I have the brooder set up right. The chicks are all a week and half old. Two Araucanas and one Rhode Island Red. The one that didn't make it was a Silver Laced Wyandotte and we will likely replace her today.

    We made a brooder from a large plastic storage box and set it up in the garage. It has pine shavings as bedding, a slotted feeder and a waterer. The heat light is in the corner opposite the food/water. They seem to be happy. All are eating, drinking, napping and pooping. They are peeping more than I expected but they seem to be quiet when we're not there and start making noise when we go look at them. Seems good right?

    Second, is there anything I should do when the temp here is supposed to be 100 degrees today? Do I remove the heat lamp when it's that hot?

    Finally for today, I have some questions about vitamins and food? We want organic eggs without antibiotics so I got unmedicated feed. Will that be ok or should I do medicated for a while longer and then switch? Also, should I give vitamins and if so which ones, how much and should I put them in water?

    Thanks for all your help.
     
  2. silkeysandra

    silkeysandra Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do know new chicks should stay warm, even 100 degrees is probably ok for them--minus the heat lamp. If you are home, just check on them every hour to make sure they are drinking water and not acting hot. I have read here that the older they get, to turn heat down--but that's in cooler days. My guess is to watch them and make sure they seem happy and active. The thing about here is somebody will reply who really knows their stuff. I just have pullets and hens, don't do the chick thing as too much anxiety! ha! Welcome and keep posting.[​IMG]
     
  3. Mama_hen

    Mama_hen Out Of The Brooder

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    Welcome, I am in NC and I have 10 hens and 7 roos. They are 36 weeks. We got them the last Friday in Oct 2010. We had ordered 26, striaght run heavies, but one died intransit. We had also placed them in the garage, which is down behide the house, which is my husband's workshop. We had left one window cracked for ventulation even though it was cold. We had one brooder lamp and ended up getting another. There is a book you can download called Raising Happy Chickens, that will help you along with the brooder temp, feeding and watering. I have lost more since but at the time there was nothing we could do. There were 6 cornish crosses, that we ended up culling or giving away since they were huge. One roo past even though we went to a vet. One hen past even before I knew anything was wrong. The others are still doing good. About the organic thing, your doing just fine, that's what we are doing. The feed is nonmedicated and straight well water, which is tested yearly, along with a 12 by 12 fenced in run. I also am still learning and feel very lost when something happens to them. My girls lay well, except on very hot days, I don't get but maybe 5 to 6 those days. Going to feed them each day, they would talk loudly as though they were noticing your arrival, they still do that today when I go to let them out each morning, go to feed them or to give them treats. My husband says that they think of me as mom, sicne I was the first they saw and the one that was always checking on them, so now they know who I am by what I do even though I don't always go out to them, just seeing me in the backyard, they come running to see if I have something for them, LOL .... I don't know if I am much help, just giving advice of what I've been through already.
     
  4. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Welcome to BYC. When it's 100 degrees, there's no need to use the heat lamp. Ideally into the second week, 90 degrees is good enough for them. You would want to turn the heat lamp on for them late in the afternoon or evening when temps drop below 90. The third week, it drops to 85. But keeping it a little warmer wont hurt them. IMO there is no reason to provide them with vitamins...their commercial starter feed contains the necessary nutrients needed for their growth and well being. If they are currently being fed medicated starter feed, keep them on it til you switch to layer feed at about 18-20 weeks. Likewise, if you are currently feeding them unmedicated feed, continue with the unmedicated feed til they reach 18-20 weeks when you switch to layer feed. My experience has been that changing feeds while in development isnt good for them (at least in my case)...causing them sometimes not eating the new feed and when they do, causing excess diarrhea ie...too much cecal poop which isnt normal.
     
  5. lbartsch

    lbartsch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 3, 2011
    Thanks for your replies! They do make me feel less nervous.
     
  6. lbartsch

    lbartsch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks dawg53! I appreciate all the good advice.
     
  7. scottysquails

    scottysquails Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]
     
  8. texasgal

    texasgal Brood with an Attitude

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    A big Texas-sized [​IMG]

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  9. rockinpaints

    rockinpaints Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Welcome from Ohio [​IMG] And good luck!
     
  10. weimarmama

    weimarmama Overrun With Chickens

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    My Coop
    [​IMG] & [​IMG] from Alabama. Glad you joined us.
     

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