Questions I Need Answered

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by CovertS2, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. CovertS2

    CovertS2 Out Of The Brooder

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    I am getting chicks very soon and need these question answered before I get them.

    1: is it ok to put the coop up against our house?
    2: how long will the eggs last in the fridge?
    3: Should I wash the eggs?
    4: will chicks like seeing people or be afraid?
    5: how often should I clean my chicks' box?
    6: will chicks get lonely if there are only two?

    When you answer can you put the number of the answer so I don't get confused? Thanks and feel free to put any other pointers in raising chickens!
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  2. CSWolffe

    CSWolffe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    1: is it ok to put the coop up against our house?
    Yes, but check with your municipality before building there, many require coops/runs to be a certain distance from residences.

    2: how long will the eggs last in the fridge?
    Eggs will last weeks to months on the counter. There is no need to refrigerate them unless you wash them.

    3: Should I wash the eggs?
    No. Eggs have a natural 'bloom' that protects them from bacteria. If you wash them, you remove that protective coating, allowing possible contamination, and would then have to refrigerate them. Most folk in Europe don't keep their eggs in the fridge, and neither do I.

    4: will chicks like seeing people or be afraid?
    The more you handle them, the friendlier they will be. They need to get used to you. My children chase my chickens around the yard, catch them, and carry them around. My hens take it with a long suffering look and a bit of clucking.

    5: how often should I clean my chicks' box?
    Whenever it starts to smell. This depends on your preference. Some people clean their daily, some weekly, some twice a year.,

    6: will chicks get lonely if there are only two?
    No. But three or four will be better.
     
  3. JerseyGiantfolk

    JerseyGiantfolk Overrun With Chickens

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    1. It is okay to put them in the coop as long as there is no drafts/holes and they have a heat lamp, but when their older it's not needed unless its a cold cold area.

    2. Using plastic cartons will help keep eggs fresher than the cardboard kind. The cardboard kind sometimes sucks up some of the moisture from the eggs but very little.

    3. You're not going to eat the shell, but if they are poopy wash them off. Also if you are going to sell, you can rinse them in vinegar, and scrub the poop smudges off, but not too hard.

    4. In docile breeds, usually large big breeds; Jersey Giants, Wyandottes, or Delawares (examples) they will usually be calmer when they are chicks, than flighty breeds such as; some Leghorns or Minorcas.

    5. If the box seems to start stinking, it's time to clean it, and if the chicks are stepping in their poop a lot also. And when you smell ammonia fumes from the box, just clean it ASAP.

    6. I recommend getting 3 chicks, they can huddle up and feel more like a flock.

    Hope this helped some!
     
  4. hearts34

    hearts34 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Unless you are in the lower half of Fl,Texas, or the lower southwest, you will want more than two chicks. If I were only getting two, I would get teenagers or adults.
    The main reason I say this is because chicks gang up together to keep one another warm and comfortable. Even in a brooder or under a light bulb. A chick getting a chill, even for a few hours, can be deadly.
    If I were only getting two chicks, I would keep them in the house under a light the first 3 or 4 weeks. If you have access to cardboard boxes, you can use them, and change out every two to three days. Or put newspaper in the bottom and change daily.

    If getting chicks, you have plenty of time to work out the coop details. Most rural areas you can do whatever. It gets sticky inside city limits. I would check and make sure I could even have chickens inside city limits before making any investment if that's where you live.
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

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    Northwest Arkansas
    1: is it ok to put the coop up against our house?
    You can but I would not. There is a lot of dust and such associated with the coop, especially when you clean it. Definitely do not have any openings into your house. Chickens can also be noisy if you try to sleep in. But the big reason is that a coop or run can get smelly, especially if it gets wet. You can build a coop so it stays dry, but just real high humidity might cause some problems. It can be real hard to keep a run dry if rain sets in for a while. The smell does not have to get overwhelming even if the weather sets in wet, but I would not risk it.

    2: how long will the eggs last in the fridge?
    For several months. Just clean them before you put them in there. They will also last quite a while just on your kitchen counter as long as your house is not too warm.

    3: Should I wash the eggs?
    Some of us do and some don’t. I wash any that go in the fridge. There is just something about putting an unwashed egg in there that doesn’t feel right. Most of mine are unwashed and stay on the kitchen counter.

    When an egg is laid, the hen puts a layer on it called bloom that helps keep bacteria out. It is not a perfect barrier to bacteria, but it helps. When you wash the egg or even rub it, you can take the bloom off which opens it to possible infection by bacteria. I wash any egg that is dirty and put it in the fridge. All “clean” eggs stay on the kitchen counter.

    When you wash an egg, you should use water that is a little warmer than the egg. 10 degrees F being the regular recommendation but that is not really that critical. If you wash an egg in cold water, the air cell inside can get cold and contract. That can cause water to be sucked in the egg and that water might have bacteria in it. If you use warm water the air cell will expand and keep the possible bacteria tainted water out. Hopefully when the egg cools and the air cell contracts, the water is either gone or is clean.

    4: will chicks like seeing people or be afraid?
    It depends on what they get used to. You’ll find that chicks go through a stage they are going to be scared of you no matter what you do. But if you are around them a lot, they will learn to not be afraid. If you provide food when you visit them, they will learn to no be afraid.

    I’ll use this as an example. When my chickens were first in their run and I mowed the grass, the sound of that mower scared them silly. They panicked. But after a couple of times they learned that when the mower passed by the run, it threw bits of grass in the run. These are considered treats. They very quickly learned that the sound of that mower meant treats and come running to the run edge to get those treats.

    5: how often should I clean my chicks' box?
    There are so many ways that could be set up there is no clear answer. If it starts to smell, it is time. You want a dry brooder. A wet brooder is an invitation to disease. If poop builds up it can smell and stay damp. You just have to use your judgment as to how often is necessary.

    6: will chicks get lonely if there are only two?
    Not really. I’d recommend a minimum of three though. When you deal with living animals you sometimes have to deal with dead animals. That’s just a fact of life. If something happens and you have three, they are still not alone.

    Chicks are not always cold when they huddle. They are flock animals and just like the comfort of having buddies around. Once they feather out, usually around 5 weeks, they wear a down coat year round and are not that affected by cold. Heat is more of a danger for most of us.
     
  6. GertrudeLover01

    GertrudeLover01 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree
     

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