A Detailed Check List of Everything You’ll Need
Before you bring home your baby chicks prepare an area to keep them. Maybe a garage, shed, or anyplace where the chicks are protected from inclement weather or drafts.
Many chicken keepers of a small flock may even keep chicks in the house for the first week or so.
• A Brooder
This is simply a container worthy of containing the chicks for the first 4-6 weeks. The sides should be about 12 to 15 inches high, the taller the brooder is, the less likely you’re going to have a problem with chicks escaping when they become more active. Brooder Ideas
This is important to monitor the temperature in the brooder. Any outdoor type that is easy to read is sufficient.
• Brooder Lamp (and something dependable to hang it from)
The hanging type will allow you better control of temperature. You’ll want the ease of lowering or raising the lamp for more or less heat. Most feed stores carry both brooder lamp and bulb. Although the bulb color of choice by chicken keepers is a controversial one, I prefer, and recommend the RED bulb.
• Feeder & Drinker
Choose both that are made for chicks, they are designed not only for their convenience, but safety too.
Shavings are usually the bedding of choice after a week or two.
Shredded paper is suitable too!
Most commonly called Chick Starter feed. They’re going to be on this food for the next 5-6 months or their point of lay, so don’t be afraid to buy a 50lb bag. It won’t be the last bag you buy!
The Extras to Make caring for your Chicks Easier…
• Paper Towels
Many chicken keepers like to use paper towels for the bottom of the brooder the first week or two. I don’t, and all is fine… your choice.
• Trash Can (2)
A convenient way to make cleaning less of a chore. Keep it handy by the brooder.
It’s nice to keep your feed in one too, bagged feed can be a big mess to clean up if it falls over. Metal trash cans are best for feed.
To dump out the drinker waste, rather than refilling the whole waterer ten times a day.
• Extra brooder bulb in case one fails.
• Small brooder (a box is ok) set-up in case you have to isolate or doctor a chick.