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Quarantine Questions

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by CluckyCharms, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. Hi,

    We have 4 healthy chicks that are 5 days old; not a single thing wrong with them. Healthy breathing, healthy poops, healthy everything.

    We have hatching eggs from different sources around the country. Some are due to hatch in 9 days, others are due to hatch in 2 weeks and others still longer. We have found homes for all of the 'extras' that we cannot keep. But I want to make darn well sure that these people are getting HEALTHY birds.

    I was (told) that if a hen is infected with an illness or disease, some of them can be passed to the egg, making the chick born with that illness...and they can (and will) pass it on to the healthy chicks.

    I have NO reason to believe that any of the eggs contain sickly chicks.

    My questions are:

    What is the associative definition of "quarantine" for baby chicks? Do we need 5 different brooders placed in 5 different locations throughout the house, along with 5 different sets of feeders/waterers to go along with the 5 different sources from whence the chicks came? That seems over the top to me....but if that is what we need to do we'll do it.

    How long do these separated groups have to be quarantined? a week? 2 weeks? a month?

    What are some specific or general signs to look for...for ill chicks?

    How long after the chicks have hatched is it safe to say that they are healthy and able to go to their new homes?

    My ultimate concern is that these chicks are 100% healthy for their new owners.

    Thank you in advance!!
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2012

  2. I know someone here must know the answers. Please? [​IMG]
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2012
  3. BackyardFarmMom

    BackyardFarmMom Songster

    Mar 27, 2012
    I would say that chicks more than 1 week apart should not be kept together.
    I had a single chick hatch from a batch and got her another chick as soon as I could, and they were 2 weeks apart. I was super lucky they did so well together, and niether was ill.

    As for quarentine... I think the risk level you are willing to take is up to you. The longer you wait to integrate the chicks the more difficult it may be. They start to establish peking order rather early.

    Ill chicks may have runny noses, sneeze, weeze, lay down a lot (lethargic), not eat, not gain wieght, have runny poo, bloody poo...

    I think you may have had a lack of response because most of your questions are personal preference...
    It depends on what you are comfortable with and, again, how much risk you are willing to take.
    You might have to set up hospitol boxes for sick or weak chicks...

    I hope I helped a little.
    1 person likes this.
  4. You helped a great deal, actually. The fact that you even answered was very much appreciated. Most of the questions I posed are probably personal preference - you're right on that. However, I've never raised chickens before so I really have no personal experience to base a personal preference on...so I was hoping to glean from someone else. :'') You had lot of good advice, especially in regard to the fact that they set up a pecking order early on...I didn't think about that. Can I put the baby chicks in the same brooder - in a paneled off section so that they can hear each other and get used to the 'noise' of them, perhaps that may help? I have no idea.

    Failing at chicken math has consequences. [​IMG] Thank you again for answering me and having useful advice.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2012
  5. BackyardFarmMom

    BackyardFarmMom Songster

    Mar 27, 2012
    I would use hardware cloth to separate larger chicks from smaller so they can see the other chicks without being able to trample them.
    You may find that some of the larger chicks are more tolerant of smaller babies than others.
    If you are going to mix ages just be there to watch them.
    If you find some are being smashed/stepped on, pecked at repeatedly, not allowed to eat/drink... they need to be separated

    You may find that they do really well together...[​IMG]
    ---I do know that it is much harder to introduce them when they are older.---[​IMG]

    I think that you could give the ones that you are not keeping away ASAP... Having fewer chicks will make it easier on you and the chicks. It will be up to the new owner to decide how they will care for and quarintine their animals. If they don't like that you mixed chicks, then they don't have to take your chicks. (hatcheries and stores mix chicks all the time)

    I was told by a wise BYC friend that... with livestock you have dead stock...
    You may lose a few chicks to failure to thrive, illness, pasty butt, cannibalism between chicks...
    You will learn like the rest of us did... trial and error... but I hope you will continue to look up answers and asking them here![​IMG]

    Fuzzy's Farm is a thread with some good people if you would like to ask more questions there, we would be glad to help! Tell them BYFM sent you[​IMG]
  6. Haunted55

    Haunted55 Songster

    Feb 15, 2012
    Central Maine
    Since you have never had chickens before, I am assuming all your feeders and waters are new. The only thing I can add to BackyardFarmMom is I usually keep my chicks in seperate brooders, clear plastic totes, for 4-6 weeks. Far enough away from each other that nothing from one can get into another, but close enough so they can see each other. I usually seperate a room in my chicken house into smaller pens after that with wire in between. As long as they are healthy there is no issue and they get to see and know the other birds so intergration is much easier later on. You have to asses your space and how much time you want to put into them. This is where you will find your answer.

    Good luck and enjoy!
    1 person likes this.
  7. Thank you for your contribution also, Haunted - gives me ideas. We do have large totes but silly us...bought blue ones. [​IMG] (not clear). They are cheap enough so I think the clear ones will be a good idea. Right now the 4 we have are in three cardboard boxes taped together on the outside, making a large L shape. I did it that way so the cooler end is actually cool and completely blocked off from the heatlamp...they sort of go on both sides.

    Yes, the feeder and waterer are new, though we only have 1 of each. We just have the brooder ones (quite tiny) and were very cheap - so we can get more of those until they're all outside and we have galvanized ones on order (will be here when the coop is here).

    Our chicken coop is 4x9 total but that includes the run (you can see it on my profile, as it's not actually been delivered yet). It says it's big enough for 8-12 chickens but ... I'd rather just use it for 6 as I want them to have plenty of room.

    I can't see the inside, I can only go by what the builder told me, but I'm pretty sure there's enough room in there for separate areas for the clutches? Thank you for that, that's also a good idea, and I'll see what we can find for temporary wire partitions.

    Thank you both very very much.

  8. fuzzybutt love

    fuzzybutt love Songster

    Jul 30, 2011
    [​IMG] Hello, feel free to stop by the thread anytime. We are a chatty bunch [​IMG] Always nice to have another friend. We talk about a lot of life in general, and will do our dangdest to answer questions! :)

    Yes, i would only put 6 chickens max with that coop/ run, only because the run also goes under the coop. What breeds did you settle on keeping? Some breeds do better in confinement than others. If you bury a hardware cloth apron around the perimeter, you will be safer against digging predators. Is the run made out of hardware cloth also? Chicken wire rusts quickly and is useless against coons. If you were close we could probably save you some $$$$ and set the DH's to work :) It is a cute setup, looks easy to make.

    One tip on the feeders and waterers, if you set them up off the ground a bit as they grow, it will cut down on the amount of bedding that gets in there. In the winter i just use a large heated dog bowl, (there are heated buckets too). Easy to dump in the cold winter!

    You will like chickens if you've never had them before. I didn't know anything about them at all when i got my first bunch, and i'm still just as excited at this bunch as i was 3 years ago! Each and every one has a distinct personality and there is nothing better than spending a lazy summer afternoon just giggling at their little dramas.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2012
  9. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Songster

    May 1, 2011
    How big is the run on that coop combo? Are these large fowl or bantam chickens? What is your climate like?

    Having gone through having Marek's brought into my flock from outside sources, I would keep each batch separated with different feed and waterers for each. Disinfect everything each time that you clean. One thing people don't think about when quaranining...a lot of chicken diseases are spread via the air...your heat/AC unit, if you have forced air, will spread any illness throughout your home. Just something to keep in mind.
  10. Hi there, to be honest I'm not sure how big the run is in ratio to the actual 'coop' portion. This is just the coop we ordered though...doesn't include the big tractor thing we're building for them. It's going to have a sort of "entry tube" that fits snuggly into the little door you see on the front there....then will lead into a big enclosed area for them to fiddle around in. You'll have to excuse my lack of artistic skill - but the actual plans are at my husband's work, where the tractor part is being built...so this will have to do.

    What are we keeping?

    3 Norwegian Jaerhons
    3 Jubilee Orpingtons

    So FAR, we only have three sides of the large encloser finished, and the horizontal "tunnel". We won't be able to build the part that fits to the door until the coop is delivered and we can get exact measurements.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2012

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