Monday, June 23, 2014

Over Preparing

   The chicks are hatching today, so that means not only am I excited, but really nervous. And when I am nervous, I over prepare. So, over the last couple months I have been doing just that. Over preparing.
   First I made a chart about some of the things to expect when we get the chicks. (Click to zoom in.)

   After that I looked up chick development in the egg. I wrote down what happened each day on a card. I figured out what day the incubation started (count back from hatch day). Then I read the card to my family each morning. This way we could all learn about chick development.

   Also, eight days before the hatch day I made cards about the breeds we are getting (eight days for eight breeds). (I had originally ordered five but, ordered three more after the first chickens passed away.)

   And of course... the brooder! We decided on a modified plastic bin because of its cheapness and ease to clean. We cut out the top and put in screen for ventilation. Then my Mom took me on a chicken shopping spree for the rest of the supplies we needed!

We had to put cardboard in the bottom to make it flat.

Then newspaper and paper towels went in.

   We got a 250 watt red light bulb. I am nervous about the heating but we tested it at the height shown and it was the right temperature. You can also see our thermometer in this picture. It was meant for brooders so it goes to the right temperature.

   Here is our chick feeder and water. The box is where we will put chick grit once they are old enough. (Chick grit is a course sand you give the chicks so they have something to break down their food with.)

   As I said, I over prepare. The chicks will be coming through the mail sometime this week. I can't wait!

Edit: When I first posted this I had a socialization chart. It basically said to leave them alone. I ended up ignoring the chart because D (see first post) told me that you should hold them as much as possible as soon as possible when you get them through the mail. This is what I ended up doing. I will let you know how it goes! 

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