new to raising

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by kmartinez, Jan 11, 2015.

  1. kmartinez

    kmartinez Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have read alot but yet I am still confused alot LOL..I am planning on getting 16 chicks. 15 pullets and a rooster.

    I read the rooster keeps those hens in check LOL

    Anyway I am torn on feed use. I would prefer to keep them on an organic diet however, my neighbor has some chickens her coop is 10 foot off my fence line and her run butts up to my fence. I do not plan on putting my coop or run on that side but i know where she got them from and after research it seems the hatchery around here has had chickens with Mareks tracked back to them..I have 3/4 of an acre in my back yard however I not sure how far i should put their coop away or if i am worrying unnecessarily. Only thing I am limited on is i cannot place their coop and run with 15 feet of my septic tank or lines so they have to be towards the back of my yard.

    2ndly I am no thinking about the vaccine for it to protect my chicks..Would you think it necessary..

    I am also torn on feed. I have seen medicated chick feed. would this be something i should just do to or just keep the med on hand incase.

    I also found nipple waterers. This is something I would like to put in the coop; but I am wondering if I can just hook them to a bottled water and use in the Brooder..and do I have to train them to use it and how?

    What i have planned is I have a desk an art desk in a spare room that is made of a closet door and i plan on using cloroplast to build it on top of that desk with a heat lamp over it. its really cold outside so i plan to keep them there and when older put in my garage to transition them to outside..

    I read i need 3 or 4 feet per bird. however I picked layers but its 3 different breeds. the ones I want are the Black Australorps, Silver Laced Wyandotte, and Light Brahma. Which breed would be a good rooster for them? I read the rooster can't be to big nor do you want one to small. Its my understanding the breeds i like are large breeds.

    Sorry for all the questions. I read so much yet I feel I know so little all the info is bogging my brain and running together so I am a bit confused LOL

    Thanks for any advise.
     
  2. kmartinez

    kmartinez Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ohh crud sry I forgot to add, My coop I plan on it being 8x8 is this sufficient for the breeds I want or should I go bigger?
     
  3. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

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    I would place your coop as far from your neighbors as you can possibly get it, and since your neighbors chickens came from a hatchery that has a confirmed Mareks case, I would also shell out the money to vaccinate your chicks. Mareks is pretty much everywhere, and is typically spread by wild birds, but its also tracked around by people and their chickens. As for the medicated feed or keeping medication on hand for cocci, that's a personal choice. I've never had a case cocci, so I don't use either, but its not really prevalent in my area. You could call your local Ag department and ask if its an issue where you live (the Mareks too).
    All of the breeds you're planning on getting are large, dual purpose breeds. You could select a rooster of any of those breeds and he'd do well with the hens. Or, you could get a little crazy and pick a completely different breed. I've never noticed size difference being much of a hindrance for a determined rooster. My bantam boys did just fine with large ladies, some of which were more than twice their size. For a long time I kept a Japanese bantam (tiny little fella) with a flock of LF Cochin and Orpington hens. When he would mate them, it was almost like they didn't even know he was there. He jump on their backs, do his business and they wouldn't even stop walking or scratching around, it was pretty funny. He got the job done though.

    When you build your brooder, make it as large as you possibly can (your coop too, bigger is always better). 16 chicks will quickly outgrow their brooder, even if its door sized. Seriously, they grow super fast!

    Best of luck to you, enjoy your chicks!
     
  4. ChookRanger

    ChookRanger Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello and welcome.
    I use nipple waterers and as long as you have them at the right height all you have to do is flick them a few times and the chickens will do the same, they figure it out really fast.
    8X8 is smaller than I would use for a flock that size. Unless you are breeding them, you don't need a rooster. If you are breeding them, you might want to get a roo of one of the same three breeds.
    Another option, if you need a rooster, is to find one that is full grown and has a good temperament. Some folks have a rooster that started out as a sweet little chick but grew mean. It is easy around here to find roosters for sale, or even for free just because they aren't needed.
    Good luck, and don't be afraid to ask questions and post pictures.[​IMG]
     
  5. kmartinez

    kmartinez Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How big would you suggest the coop and run to be?
     
  6. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    Welcome! Build as big as you can! How about 10x12? 8x12? Then as long a run as possible. If you have a neighbor with Marek's, absolutely have the chicks vaccinated at the hatchery, and keep them TOTALLY ISOLATED from your yard, etc, for three weeks at least. The dust, dander, feathers, etc from the neighbor's yard are already at your place, so raising the chicks inside or at a friend's place will be safest. For three weeks. Medicated feed might be a good idea, although it might not be necessary. You would find out the hard way; sick/dying chicks after they move outside. Treating after the fact is not so good. I love having roosters, and have had wonderful boys and jerks that had to go both. Enjoy! mary
     
  7. ChookRanger

    ChookRanger Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yep, as big as you can manage. Your coop should be walk-in sized. Think about walking in with 16 birds all around you. 8X8 will seem huge until they are about 10 weeks, then it will get smaller and smaller. They will roost with their buddies and they need to be able to get away from their rivals. You don't want to step on them, and when they are in their run they need enough space to play chicken rugby. [​IMG] More room is good to them. There are some really nice large coops on the coops page: https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/2/Coops
    You have all the time they are in the brooder to get the coop ready.
     
  8. kmartinez

    kmartinez Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just so I can picture so I can make a proper run. How big do they actually get when fully grown. I have not seen these breeds in person so I don't know what to compare their size to..
    and thank you for all of your answers its so helpful. My neighbor has white chickens they are small with some fluffy feathers on their head IDK what they are called...
     
  9. kmartinez

    kmartinez Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok another question goodness I am sry....I noticed on most all the coop pictures, the run was dirt....Do I have to make the run straight up dirt or can i leave the grass???
     
  10. matt44644

    matt44644 Chillin' With My Peeps

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