I did make one mistake. Since I only have 20 fingers and toes and it takes 21 days to hatch eggs, I miscounted when I took out the turner. I took it out four days before the hatch and it should have been three. You see, now you have a use for that sixth toe that you never thought would come in handy.
Another mistake. I normally use cardboard boxes and build a small brooder. But for a multitude of reasons, I was not able to come up with any.
Another mistake. When my birds started hatching, I looked at Fern and said, "We forgot to get baby chicken feed." This was Saturday morning. Fortunately, there is a feed store near by.
|These strings come in handy if you can get hold of them.|
Something I learned. A freshly hatched baby chicken is not very hungry, but it is thirsty. My hatchery bought chickens arrived Monday morning, as they were scheduled, and since they had been in the mail for a few days, they were very hungry and thirsty.
Unfortunately, I received two with stiff legs, and I just went ahead and flushed them. But, overall the chicks came, they're healthy, and now my big silver Rubbermaid tote, that is currently my brooder, is just about full.
Now, my job for the next couple of weeks is to keep the birds warm, hopefully, in a draft free environment, fed and watered. I will start looking right now, for birds with a crusted vent. This happens because of too high of a temperature and the birds dehydrate. It's easy to remedy
by lowering the temperature and a bird with a crusted vent can be soaked in warm water. Only the vent portion, though. Most of the time you can clean them with a damp paper towel. But remember, do not pull the little crusty thing off, or you might injure and kill the bird.
I've included a link here as a safety feature about washing your hands and bird diseases that can affect humans. Take it for what it's worth.
And don't forget, everyone needs that first drink. Take them one at a time and dip their little beaks a couple of times. Give them time to drink and they are good to go.
In the next few days I'm going to build a permanent type brooder, install electricity in my chicken house and upgrade some interior fencing. Well, there goes TV for this week. And that reminds me, I don't own a television.
Here is another handy link that I borrowed from Murray McMurray hatchery on the care of baby chicks. It has some good advice.
So, my hatching is over for a while. Later in the summer, if I decide I need to can some more chicken meat, I might hatch another batch.
We'll talk more later. Frank