Receiving mail order chicks late in the spring.

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by HotDesertChick, Feb 11, 2015.

  1. HotDesertChick

    HotDesertChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We are still trying to get our totally-varmint-proof coop+run built before the end of April in an arid desert clime. But we continue to struggle with the project. I do not want to take the risk of ordering mail-order chicks prior to the final completion of the Chicken Hacienda. Too risky for the wee babes. We have no other place to put "tinies", beyond the initial brooder set up in our garage (garage doesn't get hot, or cold). Once outside, these "teens" will have to face triple-digit temps by late May, early June. Our temperatures rise very quickly in spring.

    Is it safe, to mail order chicks once the weather warms? I have little faith in the USPS, even though I will pick up the chicks directly from the post office. I have gotten mail order chicks in other states, and they have fared very well, depending on the hatchery source. Is it safe, to have the "teenage chickens" face greater temps once they move outside?

    Curtail any chick purchases until next fall? Itching ("scratching"?) to fill the future chicken palace.
     
  2. BayBay Peepers

    BayBay Peepers Overrun With Chickens

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    I would think it would be alright. Just make sure you have water ready when they arrive.

    I think they will do ok with the temperature if you provide a place with adequate shade, good ventilation in your coop, and other things to help them stay cool. Frozen water bottles and even frozen fruit work great.
     
  3. HotDesertChick

    HotDesertChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, BayBay Peepers for your input.

    The "next-step"-coop should have good ventilation, with wire windows on three sides, additional "holes" at the top of eaves, and shade beyond noon (coop attached to the east side of an existing barn). One (wired-over) 4' barn window will give more ventilation.

    During most of the year, our night time temps lob back down into the high 40's because of our fairly high elevation. We have wild swings of temperature, from possibly a 95-100 degree day, bouncing back down into the 40's nightly. Once I move the kids out of the "protected garage", and into the coop,... should I still provide a heat lamp overnight?

    I have used frozen water bottles for rabbits here when the summer temps get beastly hot. Some of the rabbits used the frozen bottles, others didn't. Some chose to lie against the frozen bottles. Others totally ignored them, stretching and panting in their cages. What to do chix do? What kind of frozen fruit, veggies?

    Thanks, for further input.
     
  4. BayBay Peepers

    BayBay Peepers Overrun With Chickens

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    If they're fully feathered they shouldn't need any supplemental heat at those temperatures. If they're bit quite there you could add one just try to make it as secure and safe as possible in your coop. I have one for winter that is plugged into a thermostat and turns on below 20 degrees. Last year I had it at 40, but it didn't matter because we never got close...seemed to want to stay below freezing forever.

    As for frozen foods or even just cold. ..watermelon, tomatoes, bananas, and apples have been my go to.
     
  5. HotDesertChick

    HotDesertChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 4, 2015
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    Thanks again, BayBay Peepers for your further comments, and suggestions for frozen, or cold, food offerings. Interestingly, our Desert Box Turtles (living inside our entry courtyard) seem to like the same sort of foods that you suggest for chix, once they emerge from the ground in April. Being reptiles, they like their fruit on the "warm side" though. Your in-coop thermostat sounds like a very good idea. I had a hard-wired "house thermostat controller" in a 15 x 25 ft greenhouse in WA many years ago, it worked like a charm, turning on a 220 warehouse heater/blower when the temps got near freezing.
     
  6. BayBay Peepers

    BayBay Peepers Overrun With Chickens

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    No problem at all!

    I love turtles. I only saw one here during a bad drought a few years back. I think it was just searching for water. We have a spot in the back yard that flooded so it made like a pond. That year it almost disappeared then this year it did nothing but rain so it's back haha anyways I tool it.down by the pond but never got to see it again.
     
  7. esme13

    esme13 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would be a bit cautious if the temp gets to high by the time you want to order. For NY I did have chicks arrive at 95 temps in June. I wasn't expecting it to be that hot that early.With a two day shipping period and 4 little chicks I only had one loss. Could have been many things. Try and get the chicks if ordering before those triple numbers come in. If you are ordering a small amount the loss may be smaller then ordering a larger amount with all that body heat and heated air. Another option is getting some chicks from local sellers on craigslist or even some feed stores might have some.
     

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