What advice do you have for me?

Aug 7, 2019
253
502
136
Oahu, Hawaii
I have 4 ages and here’s what I got going on. Give me your best advice:

Coop 1: 5 chicks (I think ones a rooster) age 13 weeks. 0600 their coop doors are open and they are free in the run all day. At 1700 they find their way back to their coop. They eat a homemade feed that I followed on Becky’s Homestead (unprocessed oats, corn, boss, DE). They get a large scoops thrown into the run 2x a day. I also throw a handful of crushed oyster shells.

Coop 2: 2 chicks (Rhode Island Reds) age 10 weeks. They sleep on top where it’s safe. At 1900 I close the opening so they can’t go to the bottom of their coop. At 0600 I open it back up and they stay on the bottom of their coop all day. So they’re enclosed and the older ones wander around their coop, nosey! I tried letting them in the run but the older ones peck at them and they get scared and scurry to a corner. They eat scratch and peck starter. I use one of those long narrow feeders that closes up and has opening they can peck into. They’ve been knocking it over lately.

Coop3: 4 chicks (2 Easter Eggers and 2 Barred Rock- but they are looking like they’re cuckoo Maran) age 6 weeks. Same as coop 2, they sleep enclosed on the top and hangout on the bottom of their coop all day. They love to go up and look out at the run from their door opening. I have it blocked off so they can see out but can’t get out m. It overlooks the run. They eat scratch and peck starter.

Homemade Brooder (plastic bin) in my house: 3 chicks (leghorn, black astrology, buff orpington). Age 4 weeks old. They are fed the scratch and peck starter too.

At 0800 they all get a breakfast of plain yogurt, cottage cheese, topped with either a small portion of cat wet food or a scrambled egg.

In the heat of the day I give them all a tray with frozen watermelon or corn or broccoli that they can peck at to cool off. The heat index here in Hawaii has been really high.

I’m open to advice, encouragement, scoldings, suggestions. In all honesty I don’t know what I’m doing but putting my best foot forward. Reading endearing reading gaining a lot of insight and sometimes overwhelmed.
 

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slordaz

hatchaholic
5 Years
Apr 15, 2015
3,456
6,393
602
Idaho
I have 4 ages and here’s what I got going on. Give me your best advice:

Coop 1: 5 chicks (I think ones a rooster) age 13 weeks. 0600 their coop doors are open and they are free in the run all day. At 1700 they find their way back to their coop. They eat a homemade feed that I followed on Becky’s Homestead (unprocessed oats, corn, boss, DE). They get a large scoops thrown into the run 2x a day. I also throw a handful of crushed oyster shells.

Coop 2: 2 chicks (Rhode Island Reds) age 10 weeks. They sleep on top where it’s safe. At 1900 I close the opening so they can’t go to the bottom of their coop. At 0600 I open it back up and they stay on the bottom of their coop all day. So they’re enclosed and the older ones wander around their coop, nosey! I tried letting them in the run but the older ones peck at them and they get scared and scurry to a corner. They eat scratch and peck starter. I use one of those long narrow feeders that closes up and has opening they can peck into. They’ve been knocking it over lately.

Coop3: 4 chicks (2 Easter Eggers and 2 Barred Rock- but they are looking like they’re cuckoo Maran) age 6 weeks. Same as coop 2, they sleep enclosed on the top and hangout on the bottom of their coop all day. They love to go up and look out at the run from their door opening. I have it blocked off so they can see out but can’t get out m. It overlooks the run. They eat scratch and peck starter.

Homemade Brooder (plastic bin) in my house: 3 chicks (leghorn, black astrology, buff orpington). Age 4 weeks old. They are fed the scratch and peck starter too.

At 0800 they all get a breakfast of plain yogurt, cottage cheese, topped with either a small portion of cat wet food or a scrambled egg.

In the heat of the day I give them all a tray with frozen watermelon or corn or broccoli that they can peck at to cool off. The heat index here in Hawaii has been really high.

I’m open to advice, encouragement, scoldings, suggestions. In all honesty I don’t know what I’m doing but putting my best foot forward. Reading endearing reading gaining a lot of insight and sometimes overwhelmed.[/
Welcome to BYC

Thats a lot of coops for a few chickens each, they need to be properly introduced and yes there is going to be some pecking as they get the pecking order established. I might suggest you make one into a bachelor pad and put cockerels in it so they don't end up fighting while you decide if your going to keep them or not. One thing is there will always be lots of advice and you have to decide what works best for you and your flock regarding set up. Good luck
 

21hens-incharge

Nuttier than a squirrels stash
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
25,608
105,871
1,672
Northern Colorado
Hi. :frow

I agree that is a lot of shuffling and coops. :th

If it were mine to decide....
I would get working on integration right away.

I would also get them on a formulated ration.
Homemade feed is expensive and very difficult to get right. There are nutrients that are hard to come by that the birds really do need in order to live long productive lives.
With whole grains they will pick out what they like leaving the rest.

The whole grains can be used as a treat but the ration is what they really need.

Just my 2 cents.
 

MissMarple

Songster
Aug 3, 2019
301
1,061
207
Arkansas
Nobody *needs* scratch. Scratch has little to no nutritional value and they may fill up on it(satisfying their want for energy giving grains), not eating enough of their food and therefore missing nutrients they need. Scratch is a "treat" more than a meal replacement. And as @21hens-incharge said, homemade feed can lack nutrients that are needed. Calcium for layers, vitamins, minerals, etc.

Those 10 and 13 week old chick can be easily introduced to each other. They don't have to be separated. Even with pecking. Right now, I've got 10 five-six week olds in a brooder with 3 two-three week olds and everyone gets along just fine (It's also warm enough here, as I'm sure it is there, to not have a heater on the big brooder with 13 in it, lol.) And 3 two-three week olds in with 6 one week old chicks. But that's me. Pecking order will be established pretty quickly but there shouldn't be an issue with integrating and at least knocking out a coop or even two. I agree with @slordaz on turning one of the coops into a bachelor pad for any cockerels. Depending on your temps, your 4 week olds can move outside with your 6 week olds.
 

coach723

Free Ranging
6 Years
Feb 12, 2015
6,659
11,123
611
North Florida
You are probably going to get tons of advice! A good quality feed is better than a homemade feed, long run. Whole grain feeds can lead to problems with some birds, they pick and choose the bits they like and leave the rest which can cause deficiencies. A crumble or pellet prevents that. Having grow out pens for different ages is OK, but you will need to integrate at some point, usually as soon as they are old enough to be safe. I also see a metal pipe as a roost in one picture. Depending on where you live that could be a problem in cold weather. Damp feet could stick, could contribute to frostbitten toes/feet, also if it turns, could be a problem. If it's cold in the winter where you are (general location in your profile helps when giving advice) then a flat roost (not metal) that they can cover their feet with their bodies with while roosting is better ( a 2x4 turned so the wide side is up for example). Also I see several kinds of wire in various places. Don't know what your predator assortment is, but to be predator proof then you need 1/2 inch or smaller hardware cloth to keep everything out, at least on everything they are closed inside of for the night. Other wire has too large of openings, and chicken wire is not predator proof at all- keeps chickens in, keeps no predator out (except maybe hawks). It's heartbreaking to think they are Ok and then have a predator wipe out your flock.
 
Aug 7, 2019
253
502
136
Oahu, Hawaii
Nobody *needs* scratch. Scratch has little to no nutritional value and they may fill up on it(satisfying their want for energy giving grains), not eating enough of their food and therefore missing nutrients they need. Scratch is a "treat" more than a meal replacement. And as @21hens-incharge said, homemade feed can lack nutrients that are needed. Calcium for layers, vitamins, minerals, etc.

Those 10 and 13 week old chick can be easily introduced to each other. They don't have to be separated. Even with pecking. Right now, I've got 10 five-six week olds in a brooder with 3 two-three week olds and everyone gets along just fine (It's also warm enough here, as I'm sure it is there, to not have a heater on the big brooder with 13 in it, lol.) And 3 two-three week olds in with 6 one week old chicks. But that's me. Pecking order will be established pretty quickly but there shouldn't be an issue with integrating and at least knocking out a coop or even two. I agree with @slordaz on turning one of the coops into a bachelor pad for any cockerels. Depending on your temps, your 4 week olds can move outside with your 6 week olds.

Hi!! Thank you! The “scratch and feed” is a brand. The one I buy is the organic starter. Are you saying that’s not enough nutrients?
 
Aug 7, 2019
253
502
136
Oahu, Hawaii
You are probably going to get tons of advice! A good quality feed is better than a homemade feed, long run. Whole grain feeds can lead to problems with some birds, they pick and choose the bits they like and leave the rest which can cause deficiencies. A crumble or pellet prevents that. Having grow out pens for different ages is OK, but you will need to integrate at some point, usually as soon as they are old enough to be safe. I also see a metal pipe as a roost in one picture. Depending on where you live that could be a problem in cold weather. Damp feet could stick, could contribute to frostbitten toes/feet, also if it turns, could be a problem. If it's cold in the winter where you are (general location in your profile helps when giving advice) then a flat roost (not metal) that they can cover their feet with their bodies with while roosting is better ( a 2x4 turned so the wide side is up for example). Also I see several kinds of wire in various places. Don't know what your predator assortment is, but to be predator proof then you need 1/2 inch or smaller hardware cloth to keep everything out, at least on everything they are closed inside of for the night. Other wire has too large of openings, and chicken wire is not predator proof at all- keeps chickens in, keeps no predator out (except maybe hawks). It's heartbreaking to think they are Ok and then have a predator wipe out your flock.

Thank you!!!! I don’t have any metal pipes. I’ll look back at the picture to see what that is you’re referring to.
I’m in Hawaii. We don’t have those type of predators here. It would mainly be mongoose or rats if anything. I using regular fencing secured to pallets and I have poultry fencing around the bottom with a fly net thrown over the top. I keep reading about hardware cloth. What is that? How is it used?
 
Aug 7, 2019
253
502
136
Oahu, Hawaii
Thank you!!!! I don’t have any metal pipes. I’ll look back at the picture to see what that is you’re referring to.
I’m in Hawaii. We don’t have those type of predators here. It would mainly be mongoose or rats if anything. I using regular fencing secured to pallets and I have poultry fencing around the bottom with a fly net thrown over the top. I keep reading about hardware cloth. What is that? How is it used?
Ohhhhh I do see a pipe in the reds coop. That’s right! Thank you I’ll replace it.
 
Aug 7, 2019
253
502
136
Oahu, Hawaii
Hi. :frow

I agree that is a lot of shuffling and coops. :th

If it were mine to decide....
I would get working on integration right away.

I would also get them on a formulated ration.
Homemade feed is expensive and very difficult to get right. There are nutrients that are hard to come by that the birds really do need in order to live long productive lives.
With whole grains they will pick out what they like leaving the rest.

The whole grains can be used as a treat but the ration is what they really need.

Just my 2 cents.
Thank you for the advice on feeding. When I bOught the chicks the feed store owner gave me the bag of feed and said here this is all you need. Keep their feeder full. The feed brand is scratch and peck it’s organic and it comes in 3 stages: starter, grower and layer. The one I buy is starter and it’s about to run out. Do you suggest another brand?
 

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