Quick Question

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by krista74, Oct 18, 2014.

  1. krista74

    krista74 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,576
    165
    158
    Jun 4, 2014
    Victoria, Australia.
    I am rehoming a 6 week old orphaned cockerel shortly, and he is off to a home that has 22 established laying hens. The hope is that he will grow up and become the rooster for the flock.

    He will be in a kept in separate pen within the main coop, but obviously as he is so small he will be spending some significant time in that pen with no other chicks, until such time that he is ready to be integrated with the flock - at 4 months old or so. He will be able to see the 22 hens at various times during the day and night through the wire in his cage, but will be alone in the pen 24/7 for a couple of months at least.

    I have the option of sending a little friend away with him to keep him company. I have a small batch of 14 day old chicks, of which I could select one cockerel (hopefully!) and send it away with the 6 week old chick. They would then be raised together in the small pen, and should the smaller chick turn out to be a cockerel too, well, they have 22 hens so it's not unreasonable for them to keep both. If it's a girl, it's their lucky day, lol.

    My question: Is it ok to take the 2 week old chick away from it's Momma and hatch-mates? It is already mixing with the 6 week old chick unsupervised, as their pens currently adjoin each other and the smaller chick pops through the wire in the cage to play with him every day. I have no concerns regarding integrating the two of them.

    I feel it would be better for the 6 week old chick to have company in his new home, and realistically any cockerels I have here will be sent to auction anyway (and will probably end up as meat.) At least this way they will both have a good home.

    Is this a good idea? Or is the age gap (approximately 4 weeks) too much?

    Krista
     
  2. btruegs

    btruegs Chillin' With My Peeps

    184
    7
    73
    May 1, 2014
    Spokane WA
    The age gap is not big enough to be a problem. and it sounds like the 2 chicks get along pretty well. Does this other person have a heat lamp for the chicks? how cold is it there?
     
  3. krista74

    krista74 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,576
    165
    158
    Jun 4, 2014
    Victoria, Australia.
    Ah, excellent question. I had not considered that. No, the new owner does not have any kind of heat lamp set up and is unlikely to want to do so.

    We are in Spring here at the moment, and we get the occasional night which goes down to 5 degrees celcius (40F) but generally it is warming up rather than getting cooler at night.

    At the moment the 6 week old chick sleeps on his own. He has a cat crate, with an old flannelette shirt in the bottom, and soft hay on top of that so he can snuggle down into it. The slits in the sides of the cat cage are covered up with an old pair of my pj's so that no wind can blow through the cage.

    The 6 week old chick has slept this way for the last week or so. Would these conditions be too cold for the little chick?

    Krista
     
  4. LittleRedCoop53

    LittleRedCoop53 Chillin' With My Peeps

    515
    15
    138
    Oct 20, 2012
    Southern Oregon
    Gosh...you'd think as long as they have each other for body heat...and the person who is getting them does a set up like yours where they can stay warm... i would just worry the little ones could slip into the hens area and get killed. [​IMG] i'd go for it as long as they are safe!
     
  5. krista74

    krista74 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,576
    165
    158
    Jun 4, 2014
    Victoria, Australia.
    Since they are going to a relative, I am going to lend them the cat cage for a couple of months, so that at the very least the chicks have a familiar bed to sleep in.

    Once they get too big, the cat cage will be removed form their pen and they can sleep in a new set-up. I am told they have organised a bin, tipped sideways and filled with hay, to be the new bed for them. My brother says that the cage is safe with quite small wire holes.

    Fingers crossed it all works out. I am very attached to the 6 week old chick (he was orphaned when I had to put his Momma to sleep) and am devastated he turned out to be a boy. Oh well, at least he and the other little one will go to a good home.

    Anyone have any ideas on how I can pick a boy, instead of a girl, from the 2 week old chicks? I don't want to give away a girl!

    Krista
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2014
  6. btruegs

    btruegs Chillin' With My Peeps

    184
    7
    73
    May 1, 2014
    Spokane WA
    As long as they are in the same cage, with straw then they should be fine. Best of Wishes!
     
  7. btruegs

    btruegs Chillin' With My Peeps

    184
    7
    73
    May 1, 2014
    Spokane WA
    Have you heard anything? how'd it turn out?
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by