OK, it looks like we're going with new chicks..

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Hodawg, Nov 10, 2011.

  1. Hodawg

    Hodawg Chillin' With My Peeps

    OK, it looks like Mrs. Hodawg and I are going to be starting out with new chicks instead of full grown layers. Not exactly what we had planned, but nobody around here is willing to part with proven egg layers. So we will probably be picking up about 6 new chicks this weekend to start our flock. We'll be keeping them inside (in a brooder that I have to make tomorrow instead of working on the coop, I guess it can wait a little bit now). Our desired end result is to end up with 4 good laying hens, so we'll buy 6 chicks. One that may, no matter what we do, bight the dust, and one that may end up being a roo that we'll have to relocate to our friend's ranch up in the country.

    We have a large tiled room on the back of our house that has been turned into a bonafide Irish Pup, so the peepers will be spending the next several weeks in a large tupperware brood in the Pub. After finding out today that we are pretty much relegated to rearing little peeps instead of jumping right into mature layers, I'm actually looking forward to the challenge of raising them from this earlier than anticipated stage of life. The bond between the biscuit fillers and us should be much greater, and it will give our two mini Dachshunds the opportunity to get more acquainted with the peepers. Fortunately, neither of our dogs seem to give a rats arse about any birds, but one of them hates a tree rat (squirrel for y'all Northerners) with a passion.

    Anyway, sorry for the new guy rambling. We're probably going to make the next big step tomorrow, so I'll post some pics of the little boogers sometime this weekend.

    Beers y'all,
    Ken
     
  2. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Hopefully someone will not give you all roosters. Some breeds can be identified after hatching as male or female by coloring or head spots. Do you know what breeds you will be getting. It can be 50-50 at times, that is why it is nice to get them from a hatchery if you definitely want pullets--they are about 90% accurate. It is the best theing I have ever done to raise baby chickens. Hope you have a great time with yours.
     
  3. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

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    [​IMG] and good luck with your chicks. I do a lot of hatching and just love to watch the chicks grow. All of my birds I have raised from chicks. You will have a blast watching them and their antics. Again good luck and have fun...
     
  4. Hodawg

    Hodawg Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks y'all. Yeah, cmom, I'm starting to warm up to the idea of little peepers in the house instead of full blown layers in the coop right now. You should've seen the look on Mrs. Hodawg's face when I told her tonight that we're probably going to have a 50 gallon tupperware box full of chickies in the Pub this weekend! This is going to be a hoot!!!

    Beers y'all,
    Ken
     
  5. Rosaleen

    Rosaleen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]
     
  6. Hodawg

    Hodawg Chillin' With My Peeps

    Howdy y'all,
    The coop is about 90% finished, should be done this weekend. The local feed store, Sandy's Feed & Seed, won't be getting any new chicks until the week after Thanksgiving, which is fine with us. The primary brooder is all set up ( 120 Igloo cooler with metal fridge shelves on top and 75 watt clamp on light) has been tested for warmth and is working well. During the evenings, since I can't work on the coop in the dark, I'm working on the secondary brooder out in the garage, about 3 times as big as the primary brooder.

    We will be starting with 6 Plymouth Barred Rocks. We have relatively mild temps here in northern Florida, with nightly lows rarely falling below 40. Inside temp in the house is usually around 72 to 75. How long should I keep them in the house in the primary brooder before moving them into the secondary brooder in the garage which will also be temperature controlled?

    Raising chickens. Yet another project that I am obsessed with. Must be something wrong with me.

    Beers y'all,
    Ken
     
  7. fiddlebanshee

    fiddlebanshee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The outside temps are irrelevant. Just make sure that you can keep the temp in the brooder, wherever it may sit, at the required temp. About 90 for the first week then progressively cooler until they are about at 60 degrees in week 5. Then between 6 and 8 weeks they're ready to live in the coop w/o heat.

    Good luck~ I never thought I'd be so engrossed in this chicken thing.. It is truly addicting.
     
  8. SC-ChickMom

    SC-ChickMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Don't worry, you and the missus will enjoy the chicks. It is fascinating to watch them grow and learn to fly.
     
  9. BlazeJester

    BlazeJester Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You can sex day-old plymouth barred rocks at the feed store (~75-90% accuracy). You must consider all three factors together since some will vary.

    For females look for:
    dark black rather than grayish down
    dark color on the front of the legs
    well-defined spot on the head

    Males will have lighter down, lighter legs and more of a marbled appearance to the head spot. Best of luck to you! Enjoy your kids!!!

    Quote:
     
  10. Hodawg

    Hodawg Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks, fiddlebanshee and SC-ChickMom. We're really looking forward to the whole peeper thang now.

    Quote:BlazeJester, that is some really interesting information!! Would you or anyone else by chance happen to have any comparative photos of the differences you have described between the male and female Plymouth Barred Rock hatchlings?? That would be great when I go to pick them up.

    Beers y'all,
    Ken
     

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