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Quarantine question...

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by mom2jedi, Oct 7, 2009.

  1. mom2jedi

    mom2jedi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 12, 2008
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    I have 4 australorps that my BFF got for me from the feed store. A different feed store is getting chicks either today or Friday that should include silkies. I am planning to get one of the silkies at least, if not two. I also just placed an order from MPC for the rainbow layer special (vaccinated) that should ship in a couple weeks.

    My question is, do you have to quarantine chicks too? I know for grown chickens it's recommended but wasn't sure if it's necessary for chicks. Should I plan to keep my babies separate? And if so, how separate do they need to be? My brooder is a 55 gal fish tank so there would be enough room for all the babies when the arrive, it would be simple to make a divider. Is that enough separation or do they need to be in different brooders for a while then put them together?

    Lastly, if I need to quarantine them, how long should I do it for?
     
  2. Kittymomma

    Kittymomma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 9, 2009
    Olympia, WA
    Quote:I haven't quarantined chicks I've gotten from different feed stores/hatcheries before when they've been close to the same age and size. I'd be worried about the ones your getting from MPC being so much younger though, they may get picked on.

    Also they'll outgrow a 55 gallon take pretty quick and when they get crowded you will have problems. Is the MPC order 20-25 chicks like I'm thinking or is it much smaller? If it is smaller will you be getting packing peanuts? I used a 140 gallons stock tank to brood 25 chicks and had to move them at 3 weeks old because that was too small once they started growing good.

    Oh, with older chicks/grown birds I quarantine for at least 3-4 weeks.

    Have fun with your new babies. I wish I had the room to get some this time of year.
     
  3. noitulover

    noitulover Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2009
    Central Virginia
    that tank sounds big, but chicks grow quickly! like the poster above asked, how many are you getting from MPC, how long have you had the 4 Australorps, and at what point are you getting the feed store silkies? if this is all in the same week, then you should be okay... they have a 2 week age difference or more, i wouldn't do it.

    and i wouldn't worry about quaranting them for diseases. chicks should be okay.

    i would, however worry about feather picking and trampling if the brooder is too small.
     
  4. mom2jedi

    mom2jedi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 12, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    I am ordering the 25 chicks from MPC but I'm splitting them with a friend. So it will only be around 15 in the tank. It will get crowded quickly I'm sure as soon as they get bigger but I'm hoping my DH will have the coop done by then!

    My Australorps are about a week old and I may not end up with a silkie after all, the feed store I thought was getting them doesn't think they were ordered after all. I'm going to look around tomorrow though and try a few more stores to see if I can find one.

    Unless MPC has a cancellation, my scheduled hatch date is Oct. 26. They will be almost four weeks different in age. I should keep the four older ones separate then? So they don't pick on the newbies right? How long should I keep them apart for?

    Thanks for the info!
     
  5. noitulover

    noitulover Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2009
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    if they will be four weeks different in age, there is no way that they can be kept together. that is just too much age difference. people will say that they have done it, and i'm sure it has been done, but it's not worth little day old chicks getting picked on and possibly trampled/stressed out/pecked to death.

    how big is your fish tank? like, L x W x H?

    if it's about the size i'm thinking, 4ft long x 1 ft wide, that is entirely too small for 15 chicks for longer than a week IMO.

    i can't stress how much they grow and how much more room you will need. i always think my brooder will be big enough, but it never is.

    plus, we're heading into winter. you could put chicks out at 4-6 weeks old during the summer when it's like 90 degrees out. however in the winter, you should definitely wait until they are COMPLETELY feathered out or they will die.

    i have 7 chicks on the way (2 of which are bantams) and my brooder is 4' long x 2.5' wide, and 3' tall. this is still going to be too small when they get to around 4 weeks old and really flighty. i've got about a month from the time they arrive to build a bigger brooder (which will be about 6' long x 4' wide x 4' tall). this will hold them until they are completely and 100% feathered out and ready to go outside.
     
  6. mom2jedi

    mom2jedi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 12, 2008
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    noitulover ~

    Thank you so much for all the info! I will have to let my DH know we'll need a bigger brooder by the end of the month (just got my confirmation from MPC that they will be shipping the week of the 26th).

    plus, we're heading into winter. you could put chicks out at 4-6 weeks old during the summer when it's like 90 degrees out. however in the winter, you should definitely wait until they are COMPLETELY feathered out or they will die.

    He's converting an existing shed into our coop over the next couple of weeks and it will have electricity. If they have heat lamps will it be safe to put them outside before they're feathered out completely? How long does it take for them to feather out all the way? We live in San Diego where the winters are usually mild however I've heard this winter is supposed to be cold (for us at least). It's been getting down below 60 at night already.

    how big is your fish tank? like, L x W x H?

    Yeah, the tank is about that size, 4' x 1' x 2'. I had a feeling it wouldn't be big enough for the amount of chicks we're getting after watching the four I already have scamper around in it! It should be okay for the Australorps if I keep only those four in the tank for a few weeks right? *Hopefully!* [​IMG]
     
  7. noitulover

    noitulover Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 23, 2009
    Central Virginia
    no problem! and i believe that those 4 australorps will be alright in the tank!

    if your coop will have electricity and a heat lamp, then you should be okay to put them out around 4 weeks. different breeds feather out at different rates. i would google the breeds you're getting to see how quickly they grow. sometimes breed informational sites will say "quick grower" or "matures quickly" or something like that. i know that when my australorps were chicks, they were the first to feather out! they grow at a fairly fast rate and feather rather quickly. cochins took forever to feather out, as well as my bantams like sebrights. Easter Eggers were somewhere in between.

    good luck! i know you'll love the new chicks and be great with them!
     

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