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Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by SC Yankee, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. SC Yankee

    SC Yankee In the Brooder

    Mar 11, 2012
    Saint Matthews, SC, USA
    Ok, it's the first time I've attempted this raising chicken thing. I've been reading, reading, and searching to find answers to questions I have. Thus far, it seems like someone else has had the same questions as I do.

    I've purchased 6 straight run Buff Orphingtons and 6 Rhode Island Red pullets. A coworker is saying I should get an RIR rooster so we can breed it with his Delaware somthing or other and get Sex-link chicks(supposedly something like a RedStar). He has yet to place his order, so I asked him to get me 3 Red Star pullets.

    The chicks are in a cardboard box measuring 32" long, 17" wide, and 22" tall. It has one 250W heat lamp with red light. The bottom of the lamp is 14" over the top of the box. I lined the bottom with about an inch of wood shavings. I have a one quart chick waterer and a one quart feeder. I've purchased Dumor chick starter/grower. I gave them water and food such that it was constantly available. Today is the end of their first week here. They are in my living room. The RIR were said to be one week old at the time I got them and the BO were new. These little critters eat and drink ALOT.

    My coworker mentioned vitamins in water and medicated feed, so I ran out and got Manapro medicated chick starter and Durvet "vitamin and electrolytes". I had already purchased "chick grit" and it says to use that after two weeks, so that's my plan.

    I've learned some already when faced with an issue. I'd purchased a galvanized steel 28 gallon container to keep them in. On the second night they were in my house, I got home to find one of them running my living room...Well, into the larger box they went.

    Until today they alternated between running the whole box to huddling under the lamp. Today, however, they seem to be staying out of the light all together. I suppose that I should raise up the lamp if that means that they're too warm.????

    I started giving them the Duravet in every third quart of water, and the medicated feed every third quart of feed.

    Anyway, that's what I'm doing. Nice to be here. Anyone with comments about what I'm doing should peep(pun intended) right in.


  2. The Chickeneer

    The Chickeneer ~A Morning's Crow~

    [​IMG] You should raise the heat lamp a little every week. The chicks dont need grit at all if they are eating only chick mash/starter. You can start giving them grit when you let them outside ,but you can give it to them now if you want to anyways, so when they are outside, you don't have to worry about the bugs and grass they eat. But grit is just not neccesary if they're strictly on chick stater. On the weekends or whenever you're home, let them out in a little spot in the yard for at least an hour.So when they're old enough to be out there in the coop, they will be relatively familiar with the yard, and won't be as stressed or scared. Keeping chickens is really great, and I'm glad you chose to start when they are chicks, it gives you a chance to familiarize your self with each step of a chickens life, and just adds to the fun experience. Have fun and good luck! [​IMG]
  3. SC Yankee

    SC Yankee In the Brooder

    Mar 11, 2012
    Saint Matthews, SC, USA
    Thanks for the info. Any idea how I can get the chicks to stop putting the woodchips into the waterer? They keep filling it and I have to clean it out a few times a day. Would raising it up help?
  4. KrisH

    KrisH Songster

    Welcome to the board. COme pop in the South Carolina thread, we love to talk chickens and there are many with experience.

    You already got an answer about the heat lamp, but I will also say, make some sort of a top to your box, they will begin to fly before you know it, you can use something simple like poultry net or even a piece of chicken wire, just to form fit over the top so when they fly they cant get out. Also we do raise the water, no more then the height of theiir backs, but we just use a plasic bowl and I watch to be sure the smallest can drink, it helps. Also maybe put newspaper under the water over the shavings.

    Hope a couple of these ideas will help.

  5. The Red Rooster

    The Red Rooster Poultry Observer

    Welcome to BYC.

    Chicks can sleep in a corner all together away from the heat lamp. It doesn't always mean that they are too hot, but you should raise the lamp just in case.

    Good luck!
  6. SC Yankee

    SC Yankee In the Brooder

    Mar 11, 2012
    Saint Matthews, SC, USA
    Now you have me worried. My coworker says they won't fly over my fence. I own 3 acres and planned to just put the coop near the "mother inlaws house" (separate shop on the property) and let them run the property (as I understand it, that's called free range). I've seen deer at my pear tree, but haven't seen sign of predators (except the neighbors dogs) near my property(not sure if a rat snake would be a predator of a larger bird). The fence is a 2"x4"x4' horse fence and relatively new. Now, I don't mind the occasional loss, but total loss would be a problem for me. I hear they can clear the fence, but am hoping there will be plenty of "pickings" around to keep them content enough not to bother.

    [edit] the lamp was raised 5 inches and is now 19" over the top of the box, which is 22" tall, so the lamp is now 41" over the floor of the box.
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2012
  7. NonnasBabies

    NonnasBabies Muddy Acre Farms Premium Member

    Sep 20, 2009
    On the Farm!
    Welcome from Louisiana!! [​IMG]

  8. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble Premium Member

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Welcome to BYC. Put a brick under your waterer to raise it up as they grow. As far as predators go, IMO losing one or any number of birds is unexceptable. It will only attract other predators and their kin. Chickens are on everyones and everybodys menu. Now's the time to get started on a pen and coop. They can free range, no problem. They'll need a place to sleep securely at night once grown. Hopefully you'll have a good rooster to watch and protect them while they free range.
  9. greymane

    greymane Songster

    Jun 2, 2011
    Snyder County, PA
  10. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Crowing Premium Member

    Dec 22, 2009

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