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Anyone else buy chicks or ducklings this Spring?

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  • #21
    Crazy, huh?

    You can order quantities starting at 3 from http://www.mypetchicken.com - who knew, right? I haven't yet made the phone call to my post office. I guess some post offices will deliver them to you, some make you pick them up. I truly live in the city, so I don't know if my post office would have even heard of chicks coming in the mail! Hopefully at some point they will have been briefed on their chick policies.


    • #22
      OMG!! I want chickens!! I am planting a humongous garden this year, and we have a fenced in place for the new pup, and I was thinking of chickens! I don't know what our zoinging is, we are in Guilford CT really rural, but right near the town green. On a tree lined street, like in To Kill A Mockingbird. Boo Radly's house is even next door. Not really, but almost. Anyhoo, we have about an acre behind the house, used to be a pasture in the old days, with a "pony barn' just aching for some chickens. I would have to ask my neighbors. I have no idea what they would think..

      I know I need a coop and a fence for the coyotes at night, and I could use the manure for compost, right? During the day, they peck about the yard? That's it? CHicken feed and water? I think I won't this year, but I am going to work on that for next year. How fun. Egg money. I could make my own egg money.

      If I get a cow, I could sell the butter.

      Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.


      • #23
        Oh, and does anyone slaughter? I figured if I get the chickens, some of them should be for eating (sorry, chickens). I wonder if anyone eats any of their barnyard fowl, and what kind they use for that, and at what age?
        Airborne? Oh. Yes, he can take a joke. Once. After that, the joke's on you.


        • #24
          AR -

          I process my chickens at home - my chickens are for meat and eggs.

          I purchase utility breeds and I prefer to use endangered or rare breeds. Guess that seems odd that I'd eat rare or endangered breeds.. but it isn't.

          The idea is to keep the breed viable and in demand - so it doesn't die out.

          They taste delicious, by the way. Not anything like what you get at the grocery store.
          Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
          Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
          -Rudyard Kipling


          • #25
            Originally posted by JSwan View Post
            I bought:

            Black Australorps
            Buff Orpingtons
            Cuckoo Marans
            Salmon Faverolle - 5 toes!!!!

            I wanted more rare/endangered breeds but as usual I wait too late to order. I buy straight run utility fowl for meat and eggs.
            I want to see pics of your Marans! I think the dark brown egg thing is just cool.

            We just got two bantams with fuzzy legs today. No idea if they are male or female, unfortunately. I guess time will tell. We wanted more ducks but the feed store was all out.


            • #26
              I will - I've never owned that breed and have no idea what to expect.

              I am most pleased with the Australorps and Naked Neck Turkens (in my current flock).

              I have found them co-mingling with the horses, which surprised me because the evil rooster is usually very fussy about where he lets his girls go. Maybe the warmer weather and insects/worms were just too tempting. I don't mind letting a small layer flock loose like that - but the 50 chicks coming in will be sexed and placed into pens - and they'll go out on a resting pasture as part of my rotation.

              I don't know anyone that has Naked Necks and the people that have seen them in my yard keep thinking they are turkeys.
              Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
              Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
              -Rudyard Kipling


              • #27
                Originally posted by JSwan View Post
                ... - but the 50 chicks coming in will be sexed and placed into pens - ....
                How do you sex them as little chicks?


                • #28
                  My six little chicks came home yesterday! I picked them up from a local fellow who calls himself the Chicken Rancher.

                  I have 2 each of Black Australorp, Buff Orpington and Red Star. They are adorable little fuzzy bums!

                  I have them in a home-made brooder with heat lamp on the dining room table until they are feathered enough to go into their little coop!


                  • #29
                    Originally posted by Hampton Bay View Post
                    How do you sex them as little chicks?

                    You can do it by feathers but you have to wait until they are older. I'll probably wait until they are older and ready to free-range. I've got plenty of room for chicks to run around.

                    How many of y'all vaccinate for Mareks? And for those who raise turkeys and chickens, what are your management methods to prevent blackhead?

                    There seems to be a few folks that end up having trouble with chickens roosting in the barn rafters and pooping on horses, laying eggs in the hay, etc. I've never had any problems - BUT my coop is rather far away from the horse barn.

                    For those who have problems with chickens in the rafters - is your coop close to the barn or far away?

                    The reason I ask is the 25 I raised last spring was the first flock I'd raised all by myself from brooder to freezer. I helped when I was a kid and wasn't a complete novice - but certainly not an expert. Everything went very well and the birds go to bed in their coop like clockwork.
                    Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
                    Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
                    -Rudyard Kipling


                    • #30
                      Just picked up 2 adorable little Ducklings from a local store. I've got them set up in a good sized rubbermaid container with heat lamp aimed on half. I mixed the their water with antibiotics that the employee recommended that they get and a bit of sugar. They've got their food and shaving to snooze in. They seem soooo upset! One of them won't stop crying....I've never done this before....any suggestions? I plan to build them a secure pen outside once they are big enough, but I'd like to keep them happy until then.

                      "Animals can sometimes take us to a place that we cannot reach ourself"

                      ** Support the classic Three Day Event! Ride a Long Format **


                      • #31
                        They're probably just a little stressed.

                        If thy are eating, drinking and pooping and talking, they are probably ok. Just keep them warm and the area quiet.

                        Talking is good - I love to hear my peeps chirping. For about 2 minutes. Then I'm glad they are out in the barn and not in my kitchen.

                        I LOVE your sig line, by the way. Jimmy Wofford is the best!
                        Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
                        Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
                        -Rudyard Kipling


                        • #32
                          Thanks! I'm a new Duckie mommy and have NO idea what they want! They were SOOOO cute last night though after they settled down. I put my hand in their box and they came over and climed right in to my open hand for some lovin! This morning I put a small kitty litter box half full of water in with them, and they havn't gotten out! They LOVE it! and they keep their drinking water a bit cleaner when they play in their playing water! I am smitten with them! Now I just need names! I'll try to post photos!

                          "Animals can sometimes take us to a place that we cannot reach ourself"

                          ** Support the classic Three Day Event! Ride a Long Format **


                          • #33
                            ok....let me know if these work!



                            "Animals can sometimes take us to a place that we cannot reach ourself"

                            ** Support the classic Three Day Event! Ride a Long Format **


                            • #34
                              Naked Chick?

                              My 25 chicks are almost 6 weeks old now, very noisy, and have pretty much feathered out...except one scrawny little guy. He is almost naked....anyone seen this before?

                              This is what I ordered:

                              6 Aracaunas
                              4 Barred Plymouth Rocks
                              4 Buff Orpingtons
                              2 Silver Laced Wynadottes
                              3 Golden Laced Wynadottes
                              2 Black Australorps
                              2 Black Giants
                              2 Light Brahmas (think one of these is "naked")

                              What do you do with the ducks? Just eat the eggs...or slaughter them?


                              • #35
                                What does the "naked" one look like?

                                Is it possible the order got mixed up and you got a Naked Neck by accident? They do look "naked" as their neck and chest are usually bare.

                                I ordered Speckled Sussex last year and got - well - I never did figure out what they were.
                                Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
                                Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
                                -Rudyard Kipling


                                • #36
                                  Well.....my Ducks are for loving! My SO thinks he'll try the eggs, but I have made it very clear that they are NOT for eating!

                                  Oh...and While I was turning out a few mares today, I noticed that our resident Mallards (a mating pair I think) have returned! We thought they had decided that our big creek was not a good living situation! Well....they're back, and beautiful as ever! Hopefully My two little ones will one day be able to join them in the creek!

                                  "Animals can sometimes take us to a place that we cannot reach ourself"

                                  ** Support the classic Three Day Event! Ride a Long Format **


                                  • #37
                                    I just put my 30, month-old meat chickens outside in the henhouse (separate from the older chickens who would probably kill them pretty quickly.) My chicks (which I always order through McMurray Hatchery) live in the basement until they are about three weeks old and start getting good feathering, then they go outside. Those are straight run because they are meat birds. We process at home.

                                    They will eventually join my existing 22 egg-laying hens, 2 roosters and 2 turkeys who free-range my farm. Next month I have another shipment of 40 egg layers/meat birds coming in. My post office lady knows me pretty well...if the chicks arrive on a Sunday, she'll call and let me know they're in.

                                    No ducks for me, ever again. We raised 15 of them for meat last year and they are the NASTIEST birds. Did you know ducks and geese poop approximately every 3 minutes? Ugh. Grossness.

                                    JSwan...I let my turkeys and chickens mingle and have had no issues with blackhead at all. It is transmitted to turkeys via the poop of chickens infected with the cecal worm. I de-worm my chickens in the spring with fenbendazole. If you control the worm, you can reduce blackhead in turkeys. I understand earthworms are also a carrier of the cecal worm (which is a protozoan parasite), but I'm not de-worming the earthworms!


                                    • #38
                                      QHEventer: how old are your ducklings? If they haven't feathered yet, you might want to really, really limit their time in the water. Ducklings who live with their ducky mom get their first coating of waterproof oils from her. Those who don't live with their ducky mom won't have that waterproofing until their oil gland is fully developed...which happens when they start getting their grownup feathers. Until then they can become very chilled in water and even die if they don't have that natural water proofing.

                                      Good luck with your new babies!


                                      • #39
                                        They are itty bitty, I think 1 wk old. I only let them have a tiny pan with about 1/2 inch water. They were insisting on sitting in their waterer (even thought they can only get into the 1" wide rim of the waterer) They seem to love their little swimming pan(its only big enough for them to fit in next to eachother, no real swimming. I do have a heat lamp in there for them, and they chose to spend most of their time next to, or in the swimming pool. Should I take it out of the box?

                                        "Animals can sometimes take us to a place that we cannot reach ourself"

                                        ** Support the classic Three Day Event! Ride a Long Format **


                                        • #40
                                          I just ordered mine today hopefully for delivery at the end of May. We always go on vacation mid May and I didn't want my housesitter to have to deal with baby chicks and messing with the heat lamp. I can't wait. I've been wanting egg layers for several years. I am having the hatchery vaccinate for Mareks. It's not that expensive and better safe than sorry. I ordered from Cackle Hatchery.

                                          I ordered
                                          5 Barred Rocks
                                          5 White Rocks
                                          5 Black Australorps