New to this with several questions

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by MarieNC, May 12, 2010.

  1. MarieNC

    MarieNC Songster

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    May 10, 2010
    Hello everyone. I have enjoyed reading all of the info on this board and I have several questions. My 6 babies are almost 2 weeks old.

    1. We are supposed to go out of town this weekend with a friend checking in on my cat (we take the dog with us) but he isn't comfortable with the idea of taking care of the chicks. My husband seems to think that they will be OK as long as our friend peeks in on them to make sure they have enough food and water. They seem to get lots of wood shavings in their water, despite my putting it up higher on a brick. So I' worried about that. And a couple of them have had "poopy butts" and I had to clean them off. I know our friend will not do this. Would they be OK basically from Friday night to Sunday morning or should I petition to stay home. I really don't want to go out of town but it's a friend's wedding.

    2. Right now the babies are in the larges plastic storage container I could find. If they have to be in the house for another month, is it going to get too crowded for 6 of them in the container? Should I split them up? Wondering if it would be detrimental since they've all been together since the first day.

    3. The previous owners of our house had started building a chicken coop which we were planning on finishing out. This was before my husband JUST fractured his wrist and he will be in a hard cast for at least 6 weeks. I don't think I can build the thing by myself, even with his supervision. Anyone ever hire someone to build their coop? I am getting nervous b/c there isn't much time before they can go outside.

    Thanks for any and all advice. I suspect I will be coming here often for questions.
     
  2. blefky

    blefky life in the yard

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    I'm a relative newcomer myself to raising chickens, but I would not have been comfortable leaving my chicks for two days at that age, especially if some are pasting up. I guess others with more experience will have advice for you. One thing I will say is that about a month ago I began using water nipples instead of the little chick waterers most of us start with, and they are much, much cleaner and I would be less inclined to worry about being away over night now that I have them. The chicks took to them immediately, literally within minutes. Good luck with them! [​IMG]

    Another thought, at two weeks, if your chicks are still pasting up, you might want to try a little organic apple cider vinegar in their water - just a couple tsp.s per quart or so. It helps to establish a healthy intestinal bacteria. Needs to be organic with the "mother" which is the live culture. I also give a little organic plain yogurt as a treat once or twice a week for the same reason - and they love it. Be aware though, that ACV will corrode metal, so you would want a plastic waterer for that purpose.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2010
  3. naturababe

    naturababe Songster

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    i'm totally new myself but i read that chicks need about 2 sq feet per chick so if you have 6 you might consider looking for a kiddie pool for them, that is what i am planning to do.

    do you have any handy men in your area? they would finish a coop i'm sure. you can look on the bulletin board at the local library, grocery store, ice cream shop, etc. to find someone. alternatively you could order a coop kit online that you should be able to do yourself.
     
  4. MarieNC

    MarieNC Songster

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    Thank you all for your input. The kiddie pool is a GREAT idea naturababe!! Wonder if it will fit in my bathroom....

    blefky, I'm going to head out tomorrow and get one of those types of waterers and hope the girls get used to it. What a lifesaver that will be. Thanks!
     
  5. bendystar

    bendystar In the Brooder

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    Also new here and had the same questions. Can you use the same kind of hanging waterer that you might use for a rat or hamster? Or is there something chicken/special that I need. Thanks!
    -Wendy
     
  6. blefky

    blefky life in the yard

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    Here's a link to a website that sells the waterers. You can either buy the waterer complete, or just by the nipples and use your own container. If you use your own container, make sure to leave a small opening somewhere at the top, otherwise they won't dispense water properly. BTW, other sites, like FarmTek, also sell these, I just happened to use this one. Good luck.

    http://www.avianaquamiser.com/
     
  7. MarieNC

    MarieNC Songster

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    May 10, 2010
    I ended up getting one of those drop waterers like a rabbit would use and I've seen two of the babies using it. Hopefully the others will realize it's not a big, scary monster. Greatly relieved!
     
  8. bendystar

    bendystar In the Brooder

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    I bought a water dropper for a rabbit too and all my 2-3 week old chicken used it right away- but it was making the area around it very damp from the water dripping on the pine chips, so I was worried about it being an unhealthy environment for the chicks. I removed it- but I'll use it when they are getting outdoor time. So pine shavings in the water is still an issue for me. I'm going to check out the do it yourself kit that someone posted- but I'll probably wait until they are in their coop permanently. -Wendy
     
  9. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    FarmTek is one online source for the poultry waterer nipples, but some folks are horrified by the shipping charges (compared to the price of the nipples themselves). I just needed 'em badly enough to not care so much.

    In my opinion, the brooder is THE place where you most need the nipples! Although I do have them in use in the Big Chicken coop and the run. The DIY bit with a big 5 gallon bucket and PVC pipe is something you can wait on doing, but a single poultry nipple in the bottom of a rubbermaid or tupperware type bottle would be priceless in the brooder. Two of them if you have lots of chicks.

    Those small "units" are really easy to make once you have the nipples.
     
  10. fastpat

    fastpat Songster

    Quote:I would not go out of town if my chicks were only two weeks old, particularly not if some of them are still pasting up. The only exception is if you had an absolutely reliable friend who knows chicks and their needs and symptoms of distress. It appears you don't have that.
     

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