The beginning of my chicken-obsessed life...

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Idahochick84, Mar 4, 2015.

  1. Idahochick84

    Idahochick84 In the Brooder

    Mar 3, 2015
    Central Idaho
    Ok, I finally joined because I've been lurking around here long enough, and... I ordered chicks!! I've wanted chick(en)s for SO long, but couldn't have them where I lived before (silly in-town poultry regulations, in a SMALL ag-based community). We're actually renting the place we're in so I figured I could grow up some chicks for my brother (they have a small coop at their new place), and that way I get a little chicken-fix before we're in our own home. So, I go to order chicks, because I can't wait for the farm stores in Idaho to get chicks, and a minimum order is 15-25!! Yikes!! At most, brother's chicken coop is appropriately sized for about 6 chickens... So what do I do?? Of course order 9 Cornish X to fill out the order, knowing I'll butcher them in ~8 weeks. Now, I have read TONS about laying hens... and until a week ago, hadn't read a word about broilers... I had a minor panic attack when reading all the things that are incredibly different between the two, but have become a little more settled about my knee-jerk decision (do I have a choice??).

    So last weekend, Dad and I built two large brooding boxes, one for the little layers (eeeeee!!!), and one for the broilers (as they are going to be out in a shed and not in the luxury of the garage). Some questions for the expert experimenters out there:
    - I was planning on starting them all (15) together for the first week (Idaho, cold, etc). I've got the EcoGlow 20 Brooder for heat. As far as I can tell, this isn't a bad idea? As long as I have enough feed and water so they never run out, they should do fine? They eat the same chick-starter feed?

    - I'm not planning on "free-ranging" per se, but I did make the tops of the brooders removable to act as mini tractors when I'm home. My brooders are 4'x6' by 2'tall. I have 9 Cornish X... this means about 2.5 sq ft per bird, and I'm thinking that's probably enough?

    - I'd like to use horse bedding pellets as bedding. Pros, cons, price?

    I'm sure I'll have more questions, but those are my thoughts specific to my experiment... I'm so very excited about this! My BF thinks I've totally lost it... sometimes I'll just blurt out how excited I am to get chickens. He says he's never ever met anyone this excited (egg-cited) about chickens... He doesn't know you all :)
  2. LoveThemBirds

    LoveThemBirds Songster

    Feb 23, 2015
    Petting Buffy Like a Dog
    Welcome to BYC!

    Glad you joined us!

    They will do fine,and can eat,chick.starter..

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