To-be chicken owner

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by taetae, Feb 24, 2014.

  1. taetae

    taetae New Egg

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    Feb 24, 2014
    Arizona
    Hi! I'm going to be purchasing 4 or 5 chicks from a local feed store. I've been reading up to prepare for taking chicks home, but I'd love any information anyone could give me. I apologize in advance for my many questions below [​IMG]

    I have a plastic bin to use as a brooder, but I might find/make something more permanent I can easily build a cover for. How tall should the brooder be if I don't have a lid/cover?

    I'll start building a coop before I get chicks, but when is the earliest I could buy them? I'm not sure how long building a coop will take, so I don't want to have chickens without a finished coop.

    Since I'm new to chickens and the likes, how much time do you spend cuddling and playing with your chicks? I have plenty of time, but I would like to know if they are hard to care for.

    I'm nervous getting them without knowing what to expect, so any other details/stories/helpful hints would be greatly appreciated! [​IMG] Thank you!
     
  2. The Lazy L

    The Lazy L Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 16, 2011
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    Build the coop first.

    Raise the chicks in the coop. When they chicks become chickens they will know where home (coop) is.

    Now you don't have to worry about having chicks and no coop.
     
  3. HS Pye

    HS Pye Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 13, 2013
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    Hi,

    Welcome to BYC! For the first couple of days they won't be able to get out of the brooder. I would just cover it with hardware cloth. If you can build a coop in a month then you can get them at age day 1. Only advice I recommend is to keep them with a constant supply of heat, water, and food. And btw, if they don't drink at first, you might try gently dipping their beaks in the water so they get the idea. Glad you joined us ;)!
     
  4. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    First of all, welcome to BYC!

    Chicks are not hard to raise but you do need to meet their basic needs of food, water, warmth and protection.

    Make sure your brooder is large enough for the chicks once you get their feeder/waterer in there too. If it doesn't have a cover it will need to be pretty deep. Within a couple weeks they'll be able to flutter up to the sides pretty easily if it's shallow. I use a deep wooden box. You can also use cardboard boxes, appliance boxes like a refrigerator box work well. Or a couple of toilet tissue boxes, cut the ends off and duct tape them together.

    You can buy chicks any time since they will be in their brooder until they are four or five weeks old. They grow super fast. Another reason to have a large enough brooder so they don't get overcrowded. So might want to start on that coop right away lol!

    You can spend as much time with them as you want, just make sure you let them get their naps in, like any baby they sleep a lot at first!

    Don't be nervous, just enjoy them! They'll be full grown in no time at all. Get them a heat lamp, some chick starter and some bedding and your good to go.

    I also highly, highly recommend keeping Corid on hand when raising chicks and becoming very familiar with what coccidiosis looks like so you can treat the minute you see symptoms. It's extremely common in chicks so it pays to learn about it and be prepared. It's very, very easy to treat but it's also very easy to loose chicks to it if you are not on top of it.

    And don't be afraid to post any and all questions here!
     
  5. taetae

    taetae New Egg

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    Feb 24, 2014
    Arizona
    Thank you so much, everyone! I will definitely keep the info in mind [​IMG]
     

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