You’re bringing home baby chicks, yay! Welcome to the crazy world of chicken tenders. You are going to love it here. If you already have a flock and chicken math has gotten to you-congratulations on your flock addition. If you are a first timer, I’ve got some solid tips for you to bring in your new flock with success.
The basics you will need:
- A brooder- this can be a strong cardboard box, tub, or appointed floor space.
- A supplemental heat source (more than likely)-chicks cannot regulate their body temperature until they are about 2 weeks old. Keeping them warm is vital.
- Chick starter feed-their nutritional needs are different than an older chick.
Make sure you have enough space in your brooder for all the chicks you bring home, keep food and water clean and away from heat source, and use about 3-4 inches of bedding in the brooder. Also, set your brooder up about 24 hours in advance so the temperature can stabilize before you bring the feathered babies home.
Of course, you will want to talk to your chicks to welcome them. While visiting with them, and it’s best to do so several times a day, observe their behavior. Our chicks will communicate with us beyond the peep! If they are huddling together under the heat lamp, they are too cold. If they are as far from the heat lamp as possible, they’re too hot.
Observing your flock’s behavior on a daily basis, is a great habit to get into from the very start. They will be familiar and comfortable with you, and you will learn their individual personalities and behaviors. This shared knowledge will help you keep your flock happy and healthy as they grow from the brooder to the coop!