new to this!


9 Years
Mar 5, 2011
NorthEast PA
Hi! I'm new to this... A couple questions..
1. what kind of food to start baby chicks? medicated?
2. any special kind of heat lamp?
3. vitamins? supplements?

If you've got a feed supply store, they'll have some chick starter to feed your baby chicks for the next 8 weeks.
If you're chicks have not been vaccinated, you can give them the medicated chick starter if you like.
Your heating requirements will vary depending on the size of your brooder; just keep an eye on the thermometer.
No other supplements are necessary.

I usually get the Dumor chick starter/grower 20%, if I get more chicks from a different feed store I some times use the medicated but if I got them the same place same time I usually dont..

I just use a regular light (they look like the heat lamps but not as big) with 100 watt bulb.. I keep them in a cardboard box in the bathroom and they usually stay plenty warm..

I have never used vitamins or supplements so cant help you there....

main thing is to give them freash water and plenty of food and make sure they are warm (they will tell you if they are cold when they huddle close to the light.. hope this helps

1) I use medicated chick starter. That is just MY preference, some use non-medicated.

2) I just choose the bulb with the lowest wattage possible to keep the chicks warm enough. 95 degrees the first week and it lowers each week after that.

3) I have not yet had to provide vitamins to my chicks. Polyvitasol (human baby vitamins) without iron is given if you have a chick that is not doing well.

Read through old posts to learn more about raising chicks. You will find tons of info on how to treat various illnesses and injuries as well as the basics.

Good luck and have fun.
thanks. I've found plenty of info already but just getting confused with it all. I'm only getting 6 chicks without vaccinations so I guess I don't need the medicated feed since my flock will be small... what does the medicated feed treat? what about grit? oyster shells?
No grit and definitely no oyster shell.
Use grit ONLY if the chicks are eating things other than the chick starter.
They will not need oyster shell until they are old enough to lay eggs.

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Medicated feed is to help build up immunity against coccidiosis (an internal parasite) which can be present in your soil whether you have chickens or not.

Grit is used to grind up food (other than commercial feed) in the chicken's gizzard. If you feed treats before they go outside where they can pick up small bits of stone to use in their girds, you need to supply some.. All purpose sand will serve as grit quite well. Play sand will not.

Crushed oyster shell is for layers. Chicks should not get layer feed with the extra calcium in it - not until they start laying eggs!

I don't use layer feed at all, but feed grower/finisher feed to everybody over 8 weeks old, providing oyster shell free choice.

Hope that helps!

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