April 10, 2007

Chicks come home to roost

The weather outside may be frightful - snow Wednesday night? - but we've got a very small army of very small peeping chicks here reminding us that it's springtime.

Angelika, Spring, and the brooder box
Angelika, Spring, and the brooder box.

Spring seems a lot too interested in the brooder box, but hopefully she'll calm down. The cats haven't seen it yet, but the peeping seems to have their interest.

Chicks, closer up
Chicks, closer up.

The chicks themselves seem pretty content. They have food, water, and heat, which seem to be the three ingredients for happy chicks. I built the brooder box, and we'll see how that works out. So far they're staying clustered by the light, but I guess that's normal for new chicks. We have six Rhode Island Reds; it was supposed to be three of those and three Golden Wyandottes, but Agway was out of the others when we went to pick them up.

In June I'll be building a coop in the front yard, where the cats and dogs can't bother the chickens and where the chickens can't do much damage. We're planning to integrate them with the rest of the garden over time, and we'll see how that works out. Hopefully we'll have eggs in a few months.

Posted by simon at April 10, 2007 6:54 PM in
Note on photos


Mary Ann said:

Hey. Nice brooder box. I've just been using a cardboard box. But it looks like yours will be easier to keep clean. You've probably thought of this, but when you're locating the coop, remember that you're going to be walking there at least once a day for maybe the rest of your life. Either put it near the back door, or make the walk meditative.

Mike Sylvia said:

Megan and I have, with luck, 3 RI reds that should hatch out next week. A friend is taking care of the incubating. Thanks for the photo, I need to get a brooder built.

You will be complying with National Animal Identification System, right ;)

Sorry, I can't help myself. Good luck with the chicks.

KAZ said:

Should you find yourself in need of a rooster, we always seem to have more than we want.

Melanie said:

My broody chicken is sitting on 9 eggs, but we have a serious mouse problem in the brooding box- should I leave her to rear the chicks, risking death of chicks by disease or attack by mice (which they may do!) or should I make a home for them inside where the family can raise them ourselves? (we have an intrigued 7 year old) thanks!

Annie Jones said:

I've recently got 2 chicken eggs but I have no incubator to hatch the chicks. Some people have told me to use a lamp while others have advised me to use a toaster. Which one ( since you are more experienced than me) would you recommend me to use? Thanks!

I'm hardly an expert, but a toaster, even a toaster oven, seems dangerous. I don't know how hot they are even on warm, but I'm guessing it's too warm.

We used a lamp, and that was fine - but we had bought chicks that were already hatched, not eggs.

However you do it, you do need to make sure that even the lamp isn't going to set anything on fire!

Cortlyn said:

I have those kind of chicks smae brooder box too