Newby - First chick hatched today - help please!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by LoveMyQHorse, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. LoveMyQHorse

    LoveMyQHorse New Egg

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    Oct 6, 2012
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    Hi - any help would be appreciated. I adopted a hen sitting on 15 eggs (one is a double - super big) - she nested in a horse stall that had a horse moving in!! I've had 5 RIR hens for about a year, and everything has gone well with my egg layers, but i'm not sure what to do about this hatching process and chicks. I have the hen/nest in a 4' cage, with thick layer of pine shavings, sitting in middle of my very large chicken run. About a week ago, one egg broke and dried yolk is on some eggs. About an hour ago, the fist chick hatched and is under hen with all the eggs. I put starter feed out, and water w/electrolytes. My three main questions are: 1) is the think layer of shavings the right thing to do? 2) how do i now if i should intervene? and 3) I understand the twins aren't likely to make it - but there is a video on youtube of a lady breaking the shell and they survived - apparently they don't get enough food and aren't strong enough to break free? If i try this, how do i know the right timing - i have no idea when these eggs were laid....i mean, i don't understand how one hen is sitting on so many eggs naturally?
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2012
  2. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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  3. TriangleMaster9

    TriangleMaster9 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So wants about a inch or so thick of shavings, hopefully you already know this, DO NOT USE CEDAR SHAVINGS. I can't really answer any of your other questions cause I've never actually HATCHED but here are some other help full things for raising chicks. For their first couple of weeks, check their butts. Sometimes you chicks get what's called "pasty butt" and it pretty much when they get dried up poo on their buttoned makes it so they can't poo and they will eventually die. So if you see a pasty but take a warm wash cloth and wide it off! Usually. When the young ones start hatching you want to superheated when from the others ( keep them in a brooder for a little bit and then you want o still keep them separate until they're close to full grown because the older chickens might see them a threat (who knows why?) and peck and bully them and sometimes kill them if they're not old enough to defend themselves. Those are the basics besides feeding and giving them what's (in my opinion) hope this helps and good luck with the chicks!
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2012
  4. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    The broody will do all the work. When hatching chicks and using a brooder it's recommended not to use shavings as a flooring until they get stable legs. For us the first few days are on paper towels. Nature certainly does not come with thin moss matting everywhere for newborns but would probably go with bare dirt excepting nest for 2 days to give them a firm foothold and prevent leg splaying. I honestly can't wait for a broody girl to do all the work.


    As for the double yolker I'd just let nature take it's course. Typically none survive and when aided to break the shell sometimes one will survive after days of caring for them both. Twins simply are not strong enough to make it unless much extra care is given then one may with possible disablilites needing more care or worse unable to join the flock. Chances are low if aided or left with broody but at least any resulting chicks after her review are healthy.
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2012
  5. LoveMyQHorse

    LoveMyQHorse New Egg

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    Oct 6, 2012
    Southern CA
    Thanks! ....lot's of helpful info! ...three happy chicks now cuddling with mom (two yellow, one black)...and one more zipping. It doesn't seem like many of the other eggs are going to hatch but i think it could take another day or two, and no pip on the big egg yet. i've decreased shavings and have a cage over dirt and the nest (grass/shavings). I also put marbles in the water feeder so the chicks don't drown. It's been fun to watch the day old chicks - a first for me!!
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2012
  6. TriangleMaster9

    TriangleMaster9 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I bet! never got to see my chickens that young. The ones that I got apparently hatched the day I left for Hawaii, I got back and they were 11 days old when I got them, but they still very cute! When they get alittle bigger we would bring them inside wrapped in a soft towel and set them on our laps and watch TV, that really got them used to us and it was so cute when they'd fall asleep. Sorry, I know i'm rambling but what ever... [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2012

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