Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Chicks are Here!

The chicks, though 3 days late, finally got to Tractor Supply Company on Wednesday!  Luckily, Todd had the day off, and by the time TSC got their shipment in, they had 30 assorted laying pullets.  I asked Todd to rush down there and get 5 (because I was told that that was how many is required by law in Ohio.) 

When Todd got there, he found out that, by law, you have to get 6, he got an extra one.  Each chick was $2.49.

So far, these are these are the expenses from the chicks:

$8.51   – chick food (25 lb bag)
$1.50   – two sturdy plant trays to make home-made feeder and water dish
$14.94 – price for 6 chicks
$24.95 Total cost of chicks at one week old

The Rubbermaid container is something we had empty around the house.  The heat lamp is something we bought for Squiggy to keep him warm in his house outside. I got the shredded paper from work.  The feeder and water dish are used plastic tubs with holes drilled in them to dispense food and water.  One has a screw through the bottom, the other is glued to the plastic plant tray.

I will keep a running total of how much the chickens cost us.  We will need to change their food to laying food within 10 weeks.  I hope they go through the bag in that time.  I hate wasting food.  I will supplement their food with oatmeal.  Once the 10 weeks is up, we have to provide them with laying feed.  So, there are more costs involved with the chickens.  Not to mention Todd is still contemplating how he’d like to make the hen-house.  We are trying to get what we can from Freecycle so that it costs us little to nothing to make.  We will find out in the next 10-12 weeks!

**NOTE: We lost 2 of them within the first 36 hours. L We are down to 4 chicks.  I am hoping we don’t lose any more. 

For your viewing pleasure, here are a few pictures of the chicks.


  1. I have been waiting for this post! Are they warm enough? Even during the day, at first, it is not a bad idea to keep them covered. They will sit, climb, stand on top of other chicks to try to get closer to the source of heat. Of course, the chicks underneath die.What is the chick nearest the screen doing? Lying on stomach? Are the wings drooping? They look and sound so cute. I miss my chickies' baby days. If that is slick paper they are standing on, it might be better to put newspaper. Running on slick paper makes them splay-legged, they say. ??? I put mine on newspaper which was a no-no. Do they run around lots?

    I hope they are all well today. Keep us posted. You can email me at the email address at the top of my blog. Lots of people have chicks die, so don't blame yourself. It is traumatic.

  2. Good evening. I knew you'd like this post. :-)

    We dont keep them covered at this point - maybe we should start.

    As for the heat, their area is at a steady 92. We have a heat lamp timer that will not allow the area to get warmer than 92 or cooler than 92. It shuts shuts the heat lamp on and off to keep the temp steady. They arent really fighting for the heat source. I read that we should lower the temp 5 degrees each week until 70 degrees. That will be easy with the programable heat lamp device.

    The chick in photo 1 was sleeping the first night when I came in to see them. They are so funny. They start to fall asleep standing up, start swaying back and forth, then their beak (spelling?) hits the ground, and then they finally lay down like that with their wings out. It is quit comical.

    They sleep alot, but as soon as I go into the room, they run around like crazy chicks. They know I come with goodies!

    The shredded paper is actually shredded paper from work. I read about the slipper surface so put paper towels over the bedding the first few days, then took it off. I couldnt believe how quickly they made a mess of the paper towel! Poop and pee everywhere within an hour.

    The remaining four are doing great. I call one of them "runt" because it's small. I thought it had some poop on its butt, but it is actually a brown feather. The other 3 look very similar, so there are no names. Even though my neice named them, there is no way for us to determine which one is which. So now, we have "runt" and "redhead." Those are the two I can tell apart.

    What do you use as a watering dish? What we are using is not going very well for us lately.

    Thank you for all of your help!