Every time I try to get into the brooder to change out water and food or clean, the chicks try to make a brake for it, jumping into the opening. Luckily they are too afraid to jump completely out, but it makes it difficult to get anything done. And I am having to the clean out the entire box every night now! They poop so much!
Honestly, they would already be out in the coop if it would stop snowing! It’s too cold for these little girls. Is it me or are they kind of ugly at this age? Maybe their current ugly personalities are shining through. There just isn’t enough room left in the box and they are getting moody with each other.
We have to keep track of the weather to plan ahead. We need to set up the coop for small birds. They aren’t ready to jump up on a roosts and can’t reach the adult feeding stations. It shouldn’t take long to make the changes needed. All we need is the weather to warm up!
Just checking the latest weather report, it looks like we will probably be able to move them in a week.
It just seems like yesterday that our little Black Australorps were just fuzzy with a few feathers. Now today their little pink combs are jumping out at me! I swear it happened overnight!
I check on them at least 3 or 4 times a day so it’s not like I’m not looking at them enough. But look at all their feathers! They are only tiny fuzz balls for a very short period of time. It’s a mixed blessing. You get so worried about them when they are that tiny. We have always lost one baby chick in the past but this group of girls, even the tiny one I was concerned about for awhile, have more then survived, they are thriving!
So why am I so concerned about combs? A comb is the first signal that you have a rooster. Their combs grow faster than hens. I see a couple good combs for such a young age. I keep wondering if I not only have a rooster, but possibly more than one!
It would be great to get a rooster, but I think more than one would be a problem. Too much fighting over the girls. I guess we will have to see!
Get a good look at the growing girls on their YouTube Channel:
Baby chicks are so skittish but put yourself in their shoes! Your tiny and people hands are huge! And the only things you have been exposed to are other baby chicks, food, water and a floor of pine chips. Now one of those people hands is dropping something new into your world. “What is that? What’s going on? Is that going to hurt me?”
One of our training toys we like to give our chicks when they are about 5 to 6 weeks old is a little perch so they can start getting used to roosting.
We weren’t prepared for how scared this batch of chicks would be when we put the perch in. They ran into the farthest corner away from the perch and started climbing all over each other fighting for the farthest spot. We were afraid all the jumping on top of each other was going to injure someone!
After about 15 minutes they finally calmed down but had collected behind their feeder. Leaving a barrier between then and the evil stick! They eventually moved out from behind the food the next morning, probably out of thirst. They completely avoided the area with the perch but that’s okay for now.
Over time our big chick got brave enough to jump up on the perch which fascinated all the others. Now you’ll find up to 3 chicks using the perch. No more fear here!
Hopefully they will translate this perch to a roost when they finally get into the coop.
OK, so our bully chick has gone far enough. We decided it was time to move the chicks into a bigger brooding pen. Give them twice as much space. More space to run away from the bully. Plus, they are growing SOOOO fast! Anyone would get irritable crammed into a small space with a bunch of siblings!
Luckily the hubby is very handy and just whipped up this nice big box and cover! He’s great that way.
We would have moved the girls into the actual coop but the there is still a good 10 days of potential snow in the forecast and the girls are only tolerating temperatures as low as 70 degrees right now. We don’t want to use the heating lamp to keep things warm in the coop because they are known to catch things on fire. Having the brooder inside our heated workshop we have much more control over the lamp, which is why we have a cover with chicken wire to keep the lamp from falling in.
With all the pine shavings and a heating element you can see how something could spark and start a fire!
When we finally move the girls into the coop in a couple weeks their only source of heat will be brooding panels which are made of ceramic. Those are safe touching pine shavings.Next step is getting these girls used to temperature drops so they will be prepared for their final home!