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Our first chickens

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Othylocke, Mar 14, 2012.

  1. Othylocke

    Othylocke In the Brooder

    Mar 18, 2010
    Dothan, AL

    We've been waiting two years for this to happen. We've always wanted chickens and have been clearing the backyard with the intention of building a coop back there in one of the corners and having a veggie garden in the other. I figure we will be 90 percent complete on the backyard come the 24th. So now we need to build the coop. Let's say that we kinda went impulsive and bought 6 red pullets from our local Tractor Supply.

    They are now in a dog kennel under the heat lamp drinking some water. I am told they were hatched today or yesterday.

    I'm told they should drink sugar water for the first day. I was also told that sugar water was the only way to get my son to drink water as a baby.

    What are your thoughts on sugar water?
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2012

  2. the_great_snag

    the_great_snag Songster

    Apr 14, 2007
    Staples, Minnesota
    Sugar water is not a must but it can't hurt. Remember though that the sugar water most hatcheries suggest for chicks is a very weak solution and certainly not kool-aid level. I think the ratio is about 3 tsp to a gallon of water, but you will want to consult a hatchery website for solid info.

    With that said, I have never used it and have had very acceptable losses on new chicks with just chick starter and clean water. Dipping their beaks when you unbox them seems to be the best thing I've found for getting my birds off to a good start knowing where the water is.

    Baby chicks have very few needs. Heat, sure footing, food and water are really about it. Don't make it over-complicated.
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    The ONLY time I use sugar water is if I have a particularly weak chick. If so, I will give the group of chicks some weak sugar water and some chick vitamins.

    The rest of the time, it's just tap water (I am on a well, no additives) and chick starter feed.

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