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Sunday, July 6, 2014

Noisy, Stinky Chicks are Outdoors!

There always has to be one!

This made me suspect I have at least one rooster amongst the three remaining chicks. As soon as I heard the lone cheep,  I knew what happened. It could still see its siblings, but it was sad. The plaintive, forlorn lone chick tells me it is out of the box without me looking. All the others quit cheeping. Are they in awe and just stop their normal cheeps, wondering if they, too, can do this? Do they realize one is in distress? At any rate, I have had to go back and give a chick a little push. This time, he realized where he should be and started sliding on the slanted box lid, flapping like mad.
I had them in a plastic box. I kept wondering why the floor was wet. Well, it had a crack or three in the bottom. And, these chicks either turned over the bowl or scratched paper into it.  The first chicks were not so messy, even with ten. Even when I got a better plastic box, and a better bowl, the chicks always looked damp. I knew that would kill them. Before, I kept a towel over the box inside the plastic box. I have fewer chickens and did not use the double box this time--cardboard and plastic boxes. At any rate, the setup was too airtight.
Before, when I got ten chicks and raised them, I had the box by the back door. The noise was not right behind my back when I sat and watched TV. This time, they were right behind my back and half as far away. They heard me when I came to use the bathroom and when I went to bed. It seems like I set them off much more often. Plus, I put a dark shower curtain over their whole plastic box when the were near the back door.
This time, they stayed awake or alert because light came in the plastic box sides 24 hours each day. I leave the bathroom light on all night. I figured this out late and put cardboard boxes, broken down and leaned against three sides of the clear plastic box. I figured that out late in their house stay, unfortunately!.
Finally, it got warm enough I could use the lamp and a towel over this box. The bathroom is always cooler, so I feared they needed the lamp, just not so much moisture held in. There was a plastic garbage bag underneath for security from chicken water all over the floor, water with the smell of poop.
I think it was about the end of May when I put them outdoors in the big pen. They were born around April 1, 2014. I put a small pen out with the big hens so they big girls would become accustomed to them. I did not want them chased down and attacked by the big girls as soon as I walked away. .
More on their transition later. They have been outdoors almost two months.
Your turn
Do you love your chicks but cannot wait until they get big enough to leave your house? 


  1. It must have been a blessed relief when they could go outside. And I am looking forward to hearing about their transition.

    1. EC,
      Yes, it was. I wrote a post for tomorrow. Tomorrow is the day I go to learn when I find out if I have ovarian cancer! I figured I might not be able to write coherently. Can you email me? I cannot find your email on your blog and don't remember if I have yours or at least cannot find it.

  2. Usually we raise our chicks in the garage under a heat lamp and they do well. The last time we had the great chick massacre by the weasel and raised them in the house. I was SO ready for them to be outside by the time they were big enough, even though we had them in the utility room, which is quite a ways from the main living area and we could never hear or smell them. :)

  3. Jane,
    Maybe you can secure the garage. Imagine them sitting ten feet from your chair and right outside your bedroom. This is how close they were in the bathroom. I think a person has to raise chicks indoors to appreciate our relief when finally getting them outdoors.

  4. We had a raccoon kill our first set of chickies . We had them in a secure wire cage(we thought). Buy the stuck his hand thru and got them, so after getting over feeling awful, we went and got 6 more. We had them on a secure sun porch. Now they're being transported back and forth to the big chicks house but still in their wire cage. During the day we put them in a run my husband built. I think 2-3 more weeks will be able to integrate them.
    The waiting for results from tests is very nerve wracking. I was diagnosed with cancer in2005 and waiting for the confirmation was horrible . Of course, treatment was not so much fun either. Best to you.

  5. I haven't raised chicks this year, but I have to tell you that I miss them so much and appreciate your posts. I loved raising chickens, stink and all.

    The saddest thing about chickens, as my husband would say, is "everything eats a chicken.' We had lost several, but the biggest blow to chicken love came on a Christmas morning. Returning from church, we found a Siberian Husky and broken in and killed 25 chickens that I showed.

    I continued to keep Silkies for a while, but decided to give it a break. I miss them.


  6. Cherdo,
    Yes, I was telling my exbf that chickens are so vulnerable animal. They have no chance of fighting back like a dog or cat. It makes me sad quite often. That sounds like a horrible massacre, and to happen on Christmas Day is even sadder. My first killed hen was after nine months of ownership. A raccoon came over the top of the chain link dog pen, right through the tarp. Now, nothing can dig under or enter the top.

    I love them, too, even with their stinkiness. I walk poop in, find mud on my leg that surely is poopy. Don't ask me how I get it on my leg. Maybe from the shoe on the other foot?

    I would miss chickens, too. Join in any time with your stories. Thanks for the comment and story.

  7. I gave birth to two chicks, and they grew up and flew away. Your guest post is on my blog and you're getting comments.



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