Newbie with questions


In the Brooder
11 Years
Mar 17, 2008
North Carolina
Hi everyone- First, I must say this site caught my attention just two days ago but I am already IN LOVE with it. I have spent a lot of time reading and looking around, and I am surprised at the friendliness and information. I thought I'd start off by introduceing myself. My name is Sarah Beth, and I'm from NC. I have had experince with chickens before- I have taken several Animal Science classes and feel like I have good knowlege of general chicken care and requirements. I have also visited several breeders and barns where I have had hands-on experince careing for laying hens.

I purchases two Bantam pullets on Saturday, each are under a week old. So far they are staying in a 2ft by 2 1/2ft box in my garage with a heating lamp, food, and water. I am not that familar with the breed, so if anyone has any information about them it would be greatly appreciated. I understand that they are typically smaller than most birds, and would like to know an estimate of how big they will get. Since we plan on using them as laying hens, does anyone know what their average egg size is (dumb question, I know)? Also, since they are smaller will their required coop space be smaller than average chickens as well? Would you suggest a coop that is completely closed in or one that perhaps has mesh on one or more sides?

We have a run made that I would like to allow the chickens in as much as possible- my hope is to allow them the choice of being outside or in the coop during the day (if the weather is reasonable) and if someone is home to keep an eye on them, and put them up during the night. Would this be good for them, or too much time outside?

I will be keeping them at my house, but this summer I would like to transport them to my barn for a month while we have horse summer camps so that the kids can work with them a bit. Since I am hopeing to keep them outdoors as much as possible and will be transporting them, what are your thoughts on vaccinations?

Sorry for all the questions- I thought I had everything covered before I got them, but that all changed once I got them home! lol
We need pics to help us identify. Bantams lay small eggs. All chickens need some type of enclosure to help protect from weather and predators at night. Good luck and welcome to BYC
Sounds to me like you should look into building them a chicken tractor. That is a coop and pen that moves. Then you can take it to the barn and move it about your yard at home too. Yes they can still have an outside door if you wish them to free range as well, but they have a safe spot to be locked up at night and a safe run for when your not watching. Great thing about moving it is that you can easy clean the area, they can be moved to new grass before the turn the soil right over, and adjust their positon for weather or season. You can also solve a little bug problem like a new ant hill or such by moving them over top!

Banties do have smaller eggs but you can either consider them diet eggs or cook twice as many. Your choice.
I have a bantam (1 year old) and she lays the cutest small brown eggs, about 2/3 the size of a "regular" egg. I just end up using twice as many! My friends get a kick out of them. It's so funny how many times people ask me..."do you eat those?" Have fun with her...I LOVE my banty....her name is Tata...
Thanks for all of your input.
Ruth, what is your reasoning behind getting more chick? I wanted to start off small, I thought that two would be plenty to start off with so that they could have some company and I could get use to careing for them. I thought after I've had them a bit and they start laying I could add more for laying purposes if I found I needed them (though I doubt I will).

Oh, and a quick chick behavior question- I was just out checking on them as they were falling asleep and noticed that the larger tan chick looked like she was trying to crawl underneath the black one. They normally sleep side-by-side, so I wasn't sure if that was her way of telling the other to "get down here and go to sleep" or if it was something else. It was something I just noticed for the first time. Again, sorry for all the newbie questions.
Hey SarahBeth - I was just teasing with you. We are all enablers on here encouraging each other to get more and more chicks.

But, in all actuality they are social creatures and need friends. If you only have two and something happens to one somewhere down the road - you'll be left with one lone chick without a friend. 3 or 4 to start with would be better - it's not so many that you can't easily care for them and they keep each other company - and if something should happen to one you'd still have 2 or 3 left.

As far as your other question - since you only have two it's hard to tell if they are "huddling" - a sign of being cold -but it sounds like they are. They will try to get under one another to stay warm, just like they would get under the mama hen. You might need to lower the light or get a higher wattage bulb.

You don't want them huddling under one another when you have a whole bunch of chicks because one can get smothered but if you only have two they can't get warm either because there aren't enough of them to huddle together so it's even more important that you keep the temps up. 95 is the recommended temp but watching them closely is a better indicator of whether or not they are cold or hot. If hot, they will get as far away from the bulb as possible and even pant.
Hi Sara and welcome to BYC. I was just wondering who told you your bantams were pullets? There are not too many hatcheries or people who can sex bantams that young.
I agree, you need more banties. And once you get more, you will want even more! That's the name of the game around here.
Hello Sarah Beth amd welcome to BYC. What part of NC do you hail from? There are lots of people on here from NC. We are here to help you, so feel free to hollar.

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