Temperature and grit for 1 week old chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by handmommy, Apr 16, 2012.

  1. handmommy

    handmommy Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 9, 2012
    Northern Wisconsin
    OK, so I have read many differing opinions on grit for chicks. Do I or do I not give them grit? I did pick up some special chick grit today at the feed mill - do I sprinkle it on their food? Or how do I give it to them? I read somewhere that once they start scratching you should give it to them. Well, mine are scratching the heck out of their woodchips...

    Also, they are 8 days old now - what should the temp be in the brooder? They seem very content - not huddled together or smashed up against the edge of the wall - they play around, digging at the wood chips, etc. and eating like mad. But I just want to make sure the temp is OK.
  2. RonC

    RonC Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 28, 2012
    At that age about 90 degrees in one area of the brooder is fine. About 5 degrees less every week starting at 95 degrees for hatchlings. They will start staying away from the heat more as they get older and better able to regulate their body temperature. Sounds like you're doing ok on the temp. Grit is necessary when they start eating something other than their starter food. They explore everything by pecking at it. Just offer it in a separate dish since they are on shavings and it will disappear into the shavings.
  3. Delta2 23

    Delta2 23 Flock Master

    Sep 4, 2008
    Chicks don't need grit if all they're eating is their starter feed. Once you start on treats you will either need tp provide it, or let them scratch around outside, where they'll pick up their own. :)

    I don't know much about exact temperatures (Ron's got that covered though) but I know you can tell a lot from watching the chicks... test it out, see if they huddle together or pant, and you should be able to get the adjustment right.
  4. CTYankeeVA

    CTYankeeVA New Egg

    Jan 15, 2012
    Our chicks are on their fourth week now and have been spending the days outside. I changed the bulb in the brooder from 100w to 65w today. They have almost all their feathers. Should I start leaving the light off at night? The temp just in the house from the hot days we're having is pretty high (low 80s). Would they be okay at night without the light?
  5. Delta2 23

    Delta2 23 Flock Master

    Sep 4, 2008
    It should be okay, we stopped using the light around that time. And, from my limited knowledge of Farenheit, 80 sounds pretty high to me! Keep an eye on the chicks after you turn off the light though, if they're huddling together they're cold and it needs to go back on.
    The chicks might peep a bit at first because they're not used to the dark, but that should settle down.
    1 person likes this.
  6. ButchGood

    ButchGood Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2012
    Central Texas
    Throw the thermometer away. This is what Ive learned. Keep it on the cooler side. When the chicks pile up under the light, they're cold. Lower it until they are spread out and doing chick kind of stuff. Scratching, eating, napping. A brooder kept to hot and treats to early may result in pasty butts. You don't need grit until they start eating other things besides chick food. But if you feel you must it wont hurt. Just sprinkle a little bit over the food. Like sprinkling salt on your food.
    2 people like this.
  7. m.r.heavenlyhens

    m.r.heavenlyhens Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 19, 2011
    I am with you on the thermometer. I just keep it warm enough so they are moving around and not huddled all together. I also live where there is a lot of sand in the soil. So as soon as I put my babies in the brooder, I mix sand with the chick starter and since I have started doing this, I have had NO pasty buts. Good old mother nature.[​IMG]

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