Testing....testing....Hello from Colorado! When will my chics be ready to live outdoors? And other q

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Jsat, Apr 29, 2017.

  1. Jsat

    Jsat New Egg

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    Apr 28, 2017
    Colorado
    Hello, I'm a newbie to this group and to the world of raising chickens. I live in the city and am visiting here an hour away at my mom's to raise some chickens! In fact, they are actually my mom's chickens (26 chics, 8 ducks and a goose). They are all about the same age. 6 of the ducklings are Pekins and we will be "graduating" them (I hate the word "slaughter"). I am an animal lover. It wasn't long ago when I couldn't even kill a fish because I didn't want to cause any harm. I've changed my mind about that. I would rather KNOW that the animal had a good life and ate properly and was a HEALTHY animal. I would rather eat an animal I KNOW, than one I didn't. What changed my mind was the graduation method my mom learned at a nearby poultry farm. They use the cone and then just bleed them out. I prefer this to chopping off their heads. It seems like it's less messy and chaotic than just chopping off their heads......but that's just how I see it. ANYWAY..... the care of these birds has fallen into my hands for the time being. We got them a week ago. My mom's husband built a brooder that seems to me to be a little too short at about 15 inches high. It has a hinged lid, but the problem I see is they will be outgrowing this very quickly. I can clip their wings, however, I still have this dreaded feeling we are in a little over our heads. The "chickshaw" hasn't been built yet.........that's the mobile chicken coop. They will have an electrified fence when they are ready......but......WHEN IS THAT? My concern is that we have no real place to put them outside yet. My mom's husband is of the thinking he has 8 weeks to build the chickshaw....I'm thinking he has 3 1/2 weeks. Those chickens are GROWING!!!! ...........FAST!!!! My main concern is that brooder is not tall enough, because when I'm down at one end cleaning, they can just jump out at the other end. It's a really nice brooder with that ONE exception........the height. It was designed with handles and no bottom so we can take it outside and put it directly on the grass on nice days. So.....my questions for now are this......#1 If we extend the sides of the brooder to be taller, can this be their home until they are ready to move into their chickasaw and live outside permanently....... and #2 Is 5 weeks too early to live outside permanently in Colorado in May. It can get pretty cold still at night here. In my mind I keep going over that brooder. Right now it's the perfect height to reach in and grab them and put them in a box and then move the brooder outside and then put the chickens in and then close the lid. I'm concerned that it will be too difficult to move the brooder around and catch all the critters if the walls are any higher..........can you see my dilemma? Can anyone answer my questions and maybe steer me in the right direction? Maybe I can get some steps and put them in it for me to climb INSIDE and clean it and catch chickens........just a thought......So, hope I didn't ramble too long. I just need some support. I realized tonight how disorganized the chicken plan actually is. I'm the only one who has the time and energy to sort it all out. I sit in that garage and baby those birds.....petting them and getting them used to being touched so it's not a terrifying experience for them when graduation day comes......I've been going on my instinctual knowledge of birds so far, but......I need support. So, please chime in with ideas and suggestions if you have any! I'm here to learn! Thank you!
     
  2. penny1960

    penny1960 la la land awaits Premium Member

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    Hi think your headed in the right direction..Welcome. maybe even use cardboard to billed it up the sides
    but would need a top your are right..
    now coop wise go through the top headings to coop small think about 4 square feet per bird okay
    the coop you build will also depend on the climate for your area have not been in Colorado in quite awhile
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2017
  3. penny1960

    penny1960 la la land awaits Premium Member

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    If you use the search box on top your can type your town and state there you will find a state thread
    they could help when it comes to coop and weather.. birds are pretty good outside once the feather out
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2017
  4. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Africa - near the equator
    Hi and welcome to BYC - thanks for joining us.

    You'll find lots of info in the Learning Centre - https://www.backyardchickens.com/atype/1/Learning_Center and if you have a specific topic in mind, just type it in the search box - there's a wealth of information on past and present threads.

    You may wish to consider joining your state thread as it will put you in touch with other BYC members in your area - https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/270925/find-your-states-thread#post_3239224


    All the best
    CT
     
  5. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    Receiving you loud and clear Down Under Jsat [​IMG] Welcome!

    As you have already received links to some good starting points and some good advice, I will just wish you all the best.

    I hope you enjoy being a BYC member. There are lots of friendly and very helpful folks here so not only is it overflowing with useful information it is also a great place to make friends and have some fun.

    If you would like to share pictures and stories of your flock, you have come to the right place. BYC’ers never tire of these and do not back away slowly or commence eye rolling when the photo album or home videos come out [​IMG]
     
  6. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Out to pasture
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Jsat

    Jsat New Egg

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    Apr 28, 2017
    Colorado
    Thanks for the welcome! Just to update you........my mom's husband is modifying the brooder to suit our needs. He's putting WHEELS on it too!!!!!! AND a DOOR!!!! So we can get them outside more easily. We'll just do some sort of chicken wire fence for temporary supervised visits on the grass. I'm VERY excited about the new brooder modifications!!! I'll post a picture when we're done......
     
  8. penny1960

    penny1960 la la land awaits Premium Member

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    Mossyrock, WA
    Would love the photo's
     
  9. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    Excellent! [​IMG]
     

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