How To Take Care Of Newborn Chicks

Dip Their Beaks In Water

How to Care For Baby Chicks

As you take each chick out of the box and place it into the brooder, do two things immediately:

  • Dip its beak in water. Use a finger to push its head into the waterer tray. Don’t be overly gentle about this make sure its beak is submerged. You should see the chick take a little drink within a second or so. Once it has had its drink, gently place the chick on the bedding .
  • Count your chicks. This is the time to count each chick and try to distinguish them by colors and markings. Forget about sexing them at this point. Just make sure you got what you ordered.

Day To Day And Week By Week Care Of Baby Chicks:

Once your baby chicks adapt to your given environment now it is time you can handle them. The best way to start is to put some crumbles in the palm of your hand and rest your other hand on the floor of the brooder.

Chicks are dirty they poop everywhere they want. There are no limits for them so keep their waterer and feeders, infact all brooder neat and clean. Water and food should be changed as frequently as needed but at least twice a day.

I want to draw your attention to the most common mortality problem in chicks that needs to be solved before day one. It is Brooder Pneumonia. The cause of this problem is wet bedding. There is no cure, and severely affected chicks can die, so keep the bedding as clean as possible.

Can You Make Your Own

Some people do. I don’t recommend it for the reason I’ve stated above: it’s really very important for the chick’s development that she has a properly balanced feed with exactly the required amount of protein and very low calcium.

To try to provide that yourself is a big ask. In my view, it’s better to pay for a high quality feed that you and your chicks can rely on.

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When To Move Chicks Outside

Chicks need supplemental heating until they are around 6 weeks old, or are fully feathered out. We moved our chicks to the coop at 4 weeks old but set up the heating lamp in the coop for two more weeks after that. I remember the first night we had them in there I was like a new mother, checking on them multiple times and being so worried about them! But they were fine.

The best part is when your chickens finally start laying eggs . Sometimes we get a huge egg like this and I just think, poor chicken. Ouch!

Chickens are one of the easiest animals to raise on the homestead. They are the perfect animal to start out with, and they really dont require too much time. When you bring your baby chicks home you may feel a little nervous as they are so small, but they are actually quite easy to care for. Out of our 5 batches of chickens, for a total of 68 chickens weve only ever lost one baby chick during the chick stage. So, if we can do it, you can do it!

While your first batch is always the most nerve-wracking, if you continue to raise baby chicks it wont feel nearly as scary with each new batch you raise. And its such an enjoyable experience, especially when those farm fresh eggs start showing up.

For more articles about raising chickens, check out the ones below:

What To Do If Your Chicks Are Sick

9 Tips For Raising Baby Chickens

Sometimes when day old chicks arrive theyve had a rough trip.

  • Make sure they are actively drinking and eating teach them how!
  • Add probiotics or apple cider vinegar to their drinking water or give them plain unsweetened yogurt.
  • After a day or two, give them electrolytes in their water. For an in-depth article, read How to Care for a Sick Chick.
  • If you notice signs of pasty butt , be sure to gently clean the feces off with a warm, damp cloth. Dont rub too hard and make sure you arent irritating or removing any skin. Learn How to Treat Pasty Butt in Chicks.
  • Sometimes there is nothing you can do to save the little ones who arrive sick. Occasionally you will have one or two dead chicks in your shipment.
  • Be sure you know the hatcherys replacement and refund policy before you order and let them know immediately if you receive dead or sick chicks.
  • The longer your chicks spend in shipping, the more likely you will have some losses. Pay extra for express shipping if it is available.

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Protection From Children Pets And Predators

The safest sort of poultry brooder is one that entirely encloses the chicks and must be opened purposely to tend to their needs. Inside the family home, exuberant children and excited pets can harm delicate chicks without meaning to. A brooder set up in a garage or outbuilding must offer protection from such predators as weasels, rats, and snakes. If you plan to brood chicks once, or only occasionally, less expensive brooder options include a premium brooder starter package, a chick starter kit or even a sturdy cardboard box.

By Step Guide On Care Of Baby Chicks

Till now we have discussed every detail about what you need for your chicks before their arrival now, its time to go into the detail of step by step guide on the Care of Baby Chicks.

When your supplier informed you that your chicks are ready to ship and will arrive soon, the first thing you have to do is to turn on the heating source in the brooders because the baby chicks are coming from the hatcheries, and it is important to keep them warm.

To maintain the optimum temperature of the brooder use the temperature sensor and maintain the temperature from 90-95 °F for the chicks.

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Safe Handling Of Poultry

Live animals and pets can be a source of potentially harmful microorganisms . Therefore, precautions must be taken when handling and caring for them to prevent fecal/oral transmission among people. Children should be supervised as they handle animals and pets to make sure they do not put their hands or fingers in their mouth. Always wash your hands with soap and warm water after handling animals.

For information and free materials, contact United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service at

417-532-4581P.O. Box 529 Lebanon, MO 65536

How To Take Care Of Baby Chicks

How do You Take Care of Newborn Chicks – Chick Care After Hatching
Source: Our Green Thumb Farm

If ever there were a path to instant farm creda fallback to hopping up on your straw bale and shouting, Hey, Im farming here!chickens might be it. And knowing what we know about the wing-on-wing crowding and misery of most poultry farms, keeping a few contented chickens makes a lot of karmic sense. We eat with our eyes and minds as much as we do with our tongues, and the sight of a small flock of freely ranging hens clucking about the property, happily creating delicious eggs, is an ongoing delight.

Whether you allow them to range free or keep them in a coop and run, caring for backyard chickens is relatively easy. As long as they have access to clean water, food, shade, and shelter, theyll go about their business without much fuss. The rewards of caring for your own feathered flock are many, and you may find yourself bonding with your birds as you would with any other pet. Their insatiable curiosity and amusing social habits are always entertaining. Besides all their bug-eating and egg-laying benefits, chickens are just plain fun to have around.

Be sure to check local ordinances before you decide to raise a backyard flock. Some towns and municipalities dont allow chickens, while others restrict the size of the flock and whether roosters are permitted. You may also want to let your neighbors know, appeasing any concerns with the promise of fresh, organic eggs.

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Keep The Bedding Clean

Check the baby chicks’ bedding daily for spilled water and buildup of feces. Remove any wet bedding as soon as possible because it can chill the chicks and breed disease. Moreover, when the bedding gets saturated with feces, scoop it all out and put down fresh bedding.

Furthermore, baby chicks often get their waterers and feeders dirty with bedding. Clean them out when you spot this. You don’t want the chicks ingesting large quantities of bedding, as this can irritate or block their digestive tract.

Vitamin & Mineral Deficiencies

There are too many possibilities to mention here. Most likely if you are feeding a fresh, balanced chick starter, the baby birds are getting all of the nutrients that they need.

If you arent sure, you may feed them a mashed boiled egg . If they have trouble eating this, mix with enough water to make a thin gruel and feed with an eyedropper by touching the food to the tip of their beak. Do not force feed or the chick may aspirate .

Mixing a little bit of yogurt in with the egg will introduce beneficial bacteria to the gut and that may help too. For more information about deficiencies, check out this websiteThe Merck Veterinary Manual.

Also Check: Must Have Essentials For Newborn

Fast Tips For Mail Ordered Chicks That May Have Had A Stressful Trip

  • Schedule your day so you can be around to monitor the chicks for the first 24 hours, and read the complete instructions Care of Baby Chicks before you receive the chicks.
  • Have the brooder already heated to 100° because your chicks will not eat or drink unless their body temperature is 100°. Make sure there is room for them to get away from the heat once they get warm.
  • Use 98° warm water for the first 2 hours, and dip their beaks in the water. Sometimes a few chicks lack the will to thrive, so you will need to dip their beaks numerous times throughout first 3 days.
  • If using a wire mesh floor, put paper towels down for first 2 days so their legs will not get stuck in the wires.
  • Medicated feed does not have enough Amprol in the feed and we recommend doing a 7 day dose of Amprol in the water after the first day of arrival. To quote Ben Franklin, An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Do not give vitamins when treating with Amprol because the B1 will negate the Amprol treatment. After treatment we recommend keeping probiotics in the water to populate good bacteria in the gut to help aid digestive order. Always change out new water mixture daily.

Session with the Chicken Doctor

One time consult fee with Peter Brown AKA THE CHICKEN DOCTOR, a chicken expert with over 50 years of helping thousands of poultry enthusiasts with their poultry problems. Once paid we will send you a paid invoice with the phone number to call for your chicken problem consultation.

Pay Attention To Your Day Old Chicks

How do You Take Care of Newborn Chicks

Life is busy and we often get distracted with all of the chores necessary on our homestead. However, making the investment in a batch of baby poultry isnt just about the financial cost. You also need to invest your time and attention.

Check on the chicks often. Make sure the temperature in the brooder doesnt drop to dangerous levels if the weather turns or a bulb burns out.

Keep a screen over the brooder box to prevent escape. Dont let the water run out and make sure their food is fresh and available. Read up on How to Save Money on Chick Starter Feed.

Little chicks create a big mess and you will need to clean their brooder on a regular basis. Be prepared to pay close attention to your peeps while they are young and vulnerable.

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How To Care For A Sick Baby Chick

Knowing how to care for a sick chick could mean the difference between life and death . Sometimes, no matter how careful we are, baby poultry are sick, injured, or weak. Planning ahead for these little emergencies will give your puffballs a better chance to survive and thrive.

You might like to read my Sick or Injured Chick Infographic for the basics

How To Care For Newly Hatched Chicks

After several weeks of incubation, your eggs will be ready to hatch. After they hatch, they cannot be kept in the incubator very long. It is time for them to move to a brooding area. A good brooding area is the key to chick survival and growth in their early stages of development. The important features of a good brooding area include:

  • A safe, protected area, away from potential predators and cold drafts. This area should be in a location where you have easy access to it in order to give them care and check on them regularly.
  • A dependable heat source with enough power for your particular brooder.
  • A feeding and drinking area.
  • A grippable and absorbant floor. Grippable floors are important because if the chicks legs slide or skid as they learn to walk they can develop a variety of problems in their legs and feet. Absorbant floors will help keep your chicks clean and dry.
  • Space. Most people suggest about 6 to 12 inches square per chick. Plenty of space is important because they like to move around. As the chicks grow, they will need more space.
  • Chicks only. Do not keep young chicks with older chickens.
  • Sanitary. As your chicks develop, you will need to clean the brooder on a regular basis to prevent disease.
  • As with water, chicks can regulate their own food intake. Just be sure their feeding dish is always full and they will eat what they need. They will not overeat. You will find yourself refilling food and water very frequently as the chicks grow.

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    What Do I Need For Baby Chicks Items You Need For The Brooder Box

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    You will want to have a few items ready in your brooder box for their arrival:

    We attached our heat lamp to the inside of our box. I am serious about safety when it comes to fire hazards. Dont rely on the heat lamp clamp to hold it into place. We had it chained to the side, as well as some bendable wire to attach it. Basically, we didnt rely on one system. That way, if one system failed, you had something else holding it up as well. Too many fires have been started in barns and houses because of heat lamps. Dont take any chances.

    We attached a thermometer at chick level by the heat lamp. This helped us monitor and regulate the heat.

    We used wood shavings for the bottom of the box. We used pine as there is some discussion out there as to whether cedar shavings are safe for chickens or not. There seems to be some debate out there that cedar can cause respiratory illnesses in chickens. Some people use cedar still, but it seems that for really small chicks it is best to avoid cedar.

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