Author Topic: Raising Chickens and Poultry  (Read 90063 times)  

Offline B-Kay 1325

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Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
« Reply #175 on: May 09, 2010, 11:52:49 am »
Oh that's great.  I used to pick up our PO box mail for the Title company I worked for and it was always great fun when the chicks arrived, they sure make a lot of noise!  I can hardly wait for your pictures both of the coup and the babies when they get there. :D

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    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #176 on: May 09, 2010, 10:50:45 pm »
    Photos of most recent work:

    DH cut hardboard (brown) for the lower half of walls for chicken area. (Local suppliers carry unpainted for same price as painted hardboard in Tucson. However driving a pickup truck to Tucson would double the price after adding cost of gas. We bought one gallon of latex exterior semigloss High Hiding White paint for less than the price of the gas. We stacked all three cut sheets outside on the sawhorses that will become the roosts. I painted smooth side of each hardboard sheet with two coats (probably really one and a half coats as I did not wait for first coat to dry completely). I cut and glued insulation while waiting for each hardboard sheet to dry. The two rows of insulation covering the lower 4 feet of the walls is glued on the west and east walls but not the north wall. I am leaving that unglued so that it will be easier when we work on putting in the chicken doors. The remaining insulation will be glued after we finish that project (probably in a couple months).


    DH accidentally tore vinyl flooring when test fitting hardboard on north wall. It tore along the wall and in the northeast corner. Next weekend I will practice my vinyl floor repairing skills.  ::)


    The three sheets of painted hardboard in place. Each is currently held by only one drywall screw. More will be added. ;)


    Saturday I took the sawhorses apart, painted the wood, and reassembled. Today I cut the wood for the roost. I painted the lumber for the roost, interior wall and door. DH measured and then cut the painted wood for the wall and door. I painted the cut ends. Since the paint is not yet completely dry, I stacked it on the sawhorse and on cardboard boxes when we put everything away for the night. The wood on the boxes is for the wall, most of the wood on the sawhorses is for the door and roosts but the one piece in back is for the wall. The wood in the pool is what was leftover. These will be used to support food and water dishes; some might be used for other purposes.


    With the last bit of paint, I painted the frame around the window and what I could around the door before I ran out of paint. I used the entire gallon in two days. (The paint I bought at Ace was already the correct color and did not need to be mixed. However one of the helpful people at our local Ace Hardware put the can in the machine so that the paint was completely mixed. I did not need to stir the paint with the paint stick at all.  ;D) I love buying just enough paint and not having any left over.  :D The two round metal items are the chicken watering containers that my mom used with our chickens when I was young. After cleaning them, I will use them with my chickens after they grow up a bit; otherwise they might fall in and either drown or get chilled.  :o


    The first picture shows the east wall and the southeast corner. The end of the hardboard on the east wall marks edge of the interior wall. This is the side where the interior door will be. The second picture shows the west wall and the southwest corner. The end of hardboard on the west wall marks other edge of the interior wall. This is the side where the nesting box will be.

    Offline Carol Hanrahan

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #177 on: May 10, 2010, 07:39:48 am »
    Wow, Annalog.  That's alot of progress!

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    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #178 on: May 10, 2010, 09:15:13 am »
    I am beginning to see the "light at the end of the tunnel!" While I had wanted the interior wall in place weeks ago, at least all of the painting has been completed more than a week before the chicks are due to arrive. While I know the fumes from latex-based paints are not supposed to be harmful, I also know that birds are more sensitive to what is in the air. The glue we use to attach the Styrofoam is also latex-based (so it doesn't "eat" the Styrofoam insulation. ;)) While I doubt I will have that finished, at least all of the lower insulation is done. I am also trying to convince DH that all of the vents should be put in this weekend before the chicks arrive. That way there will be plenty of airflow.

    The boxes of cardboard boxes from earlier photos are now going to be recycled. I had planned to use some as a draft barrier around the chicks. However DH was tired of me moving the boxes in and out of the coop. He found some of the flat panel monitor boxes that had not been broken down for storage and suggested I use those instead. (I brought them home from work a while ago because they were NOT being recycled. The boxes can be seen behind the saw horses in one of the photos above.)

    DH says that with the wood already cut and painted that it will be less than an hour to build and put up the interior wall frame and only a little longer to build and put up the door. (I say that the time estimate needs to be doubled or tripled. :D) I can attach the hardware cloth to the wall and door after the chicks arrive.

    As soon as the wall frame is in place then I can start the temperature tests on the brooder. ;D

    EDIT: Corrected typo.
    « Last Edit: May 11, 2010, 06:53:36 am by Annalog »

    Offline Angela

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #179 on: May 11, 2010, 01:57:30 am »
    Looking good!!
     

    Offline LCEvans

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #180 on: May 11, 2010, 06:01:33 am »
    You've been working so hard! Can't wait to see pictures of those chicks.

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #181 on: May 11, 2010, 07:04:21 am »
    Thanks! I am counting down the days until the chicks arrive. They will either arrive one week from today or the next day.

    Last night I ordered a wireless Internet Webcam from Amazon. The price had been reduced by $30 and DD had sent me a $30 Amazon giftcard for Mother's Day with the suggestion I spend it on books or something for the chickens. Here is hoping that the webcam works as well as was described in some of the reviews. :D

    Offline geoffthomas

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #182 on: May 11, 2010, 09:05:39 am »
    Just writing to add my encouragement.
    And to thank you for sharing this experience with us.
    It is stimulating. Thought-provoking.
    I admit that right now I am too busy with getting the vegetable and flower gardens in shape to consider any other project.
    And we are specifically not zoned for animals kept outside the house.

    Just sayin.....

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    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #183 on: May 11, 2010, 09:38:18 am »
    Just writing to add my encouragement.
    And to thank you for sharing this experience with us.
    It is stimulating. Thought-provoking.
    I admit that right now I am too busy with getting the vegetable and flower gardens in shape to consider any other project.
    And we are specifically not zoned for animals kept outside the house.

    Just sayin.....
    Thanks! I am afraid I have let my work in the vegetable garden slide while working on the coop. I am hoping to have some time left for the garden this weekend. I have a place to compost the chicken droppings and will certainly need to have more prepared garden space to use it once it is composted. ;D

    EDIT: I also have to add that the encouragement I received here has probably prevented me from postponing the chicks another year when the inevitable delays occurred.
    « Last Edit: May 11, 2010, 09:40:45 am by Annalog »

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #184 on: May 16, 2010, 06:13:00 pm »
    The chicks should be hatching tonight or tomorrow morning since they are  to be shipped tomorrow. They should arrive Tuesday or Wednesday at my local post office.

    The interior wall and door frame were assembled today. The brood area with heat lamps is setup and waiting for chicks. I started the temperature tests while working in the brood area putting down wood chips, supports for food and water dishes, and paper towels to cover the wood chips for the first few days while the chicks are learning where to find food and what it looks like. (Don't want them eating wood chips!) The wood chips should be drying during the temperature test.

    With just one heat lamp on, the  temperature was originally too hot by more than 10 degrees F directly under the lamp. I raised that lamp about 4 inches and the temperature is closer to 95 F. I have a second heat lamp on a timer so that it should turn on a couple hours after sunset and turn off a couple hours after sunrise. I will find out tonight what adjustments I should make before the chicks arrive.

    Tomorrow I will notify my local post office that I am expecting chicks and then I will drive to work in Tucson. While there, I should receive both the Web cam I ordered and my replacement Kindle. (Do not fall asleep while reading your Kindle and then drop it over the side of the bed, especially if there is a wastebasket, shoes, or something else lumpy for it to fall on. :() I will be working from home Tuesday and Wednesday so that I can pick up the chicks soon after the Post Office calls. ;D

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #185 on: May 16, 2010, 08:45:50 pm »
    Photos of most recent work:

    Yesterday the white hardboard walls were attached, the old shelf was removed, and I attempted to patch the tears in the vinyl flooring. The repairs were partly successful. This morning, after the patches had cured, we attached the water resistant hardboard strips over the edge of the vinyl flooring. The bottom of these strips was rested on a 2x4 on edge to have a consistent height from the floor. This height is also the minimum depth I want for the floor litter (pine shavings). I cleared most of the coop while DH went to Ace for more drywall screws of the correct length. He then attached one side of the short horizontal bar and then laid out the interior wall frame on the floor for assembly.

    Since the interior wall frame is slightly narrower than the inside of the coop and only as tall as the shortest wall, we did not have to do anything special for the ceiling lights. Currently the wall frame is attached to the side walls with only one screw in the middle of each side. More screws will be added after the side walls are finished. The short horizontal bar marks top of nest boxes to be added later.


    Box of full size door hinges DH has been waiting to use for years! They were bought by a neighbor at an auction (city or school district). DH attached the hinges to door frame; only two of the four holes in each plate fit on the door frame. Therefore DH cut off part of the hinge plate on one side of each hinge. The door will collapse long before these hinges do! The pattern on the vinyl floor was helpful for keeping everything fairly square without using a framing square! ;D


    With the wall frame complete, I set up the brooder area. The saw horses will be future roosts but for now one will support the heat lamps. The boxes originally contained flat panel monitors. I took several boxes home when everyone in the office got a new monitor. (EDIT: The sturdy boxes with handles seemed wasted going to recycling.) Does using 12 computer monitor boxes for the draft barrier and temporary wall identify this as a geek's brooder?

    After setting up the heat lamps and starting the heat test, I added the pine shavings, feeder supports (2x4 scraps left from wall frame construction), and paper towels. The three inches of pine wood shavings are covered with paper towels for the first couple days while chicks learn what food looks like and where it can be found. I don't want baby chicks eating the wood shavings instead! (This would pack in their crops and then they would starve.)


    I am using two heat lamps. One will be on all of the time, at least at first. The other will be on only at night. The goal is a temperature of 95 F for the first week and then reduced by 5 degrees F each week until the chicks are old enough to maintain their body temperature. I am using chain as a support so that it is easy to raise or lower the heat lamps for temperature control. Also, the chicks can control their temperature by their distance from the heat lamps. The second photo shows the timer I am using for one heat lamp.


    The rest of the wood shavings have been put into the brooder. The small red rake was purchased specifically for the coop for use as a coop pooper scooper (OK, poop rake :D). It has not been used outside so should not have wild bird disease contamination. The thin cardboard (inside of wrapping paper rolls) is taped across all box boundaries and goes to the floor under the litter. This should keep the small chicks in the brooder area. (EDIT: The fact that I had several of these stiff paper wapping paper liners is a sign that I am a paper folder who keeps these for use when buying large sheets of special paper. :D) The boxes will be removed when the birds are able to fly over the boxes. By that time there should be wire on the interior wall frame and door. There is no water or food is in the containers yet. However the containers are over the hidden wood supports. :D

    Normally brooders do not have obstructions, such as the saw horse legs near the edges of the brooder. There could be a problem with chicks piling up in the various corners. However, if the temperatures are anywhere close to correct and the chicks are of normal chick intelligence (they should as none are turkey poults :D), I do not expect a problem as I tried to make sure that each of the tight areas either have two exits/entrances or has a wide enough passage for at least two chicks.
    « Last Edit: May 16, 2010, 08:55:03 pm by Annalog »

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #186 on: May 17, 2010, 08:02:58 am »
    The brooder temperature was fairly stable during the night but a little cool. I had left the window open as a worst case test. I suspect the temperature will be fine with the window closed. If not, I can certainly lower the heat lamp. I am ready for the chicks to arrive and their new home is ready for them. ;D

    Offline B-Kay 1325

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #187 on: May 17, 2010, 08:12:05 am »
    This is getting exciting!  Are we now on "Official Chick Watch"?  I don't think "I" have ever said that before!! lol 

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #188 on: May 17, 2010, 10:22:22 am »
    This is getting exciting!  Are we now on "Official Chick Watch"?  I don't think "I" have ever said that before!! lol 
    ;D It certainly depends on the type of chicks, doesn't it?

    Yes, we are definitely on "Official Chick Watch"! I was late in to work today because I stopped at my local post office this morning. (They open at 8:30.) The instructions from the hatchery suggested notifying my local post office about the pending arrival of chicks. The person at the window called my letter carrier up to the counter to speak with me. (Love small town post offices!) He took my name, address, and both phone numbers (home and cell). He said that they know by 7 AM if chicks have arrived and asked when it would be OK to phone. I said anytime. He said I could come any time after I receive the phone call and then explained how to get to the loading dock and where I would find the buzzer.  I will be ready to leave the house tomorrow morning ( and the next day if necessary) as soon as I get the phone call. ;D

    I also received an e-mail late on Saturday saying my Web cam will be waiting at the appropriate Tucson post office for where I work. So today I should receive my replacement Kindle and new Web cam. So today is Replacement Kindle Watch and Web Cam Watch. After I get the Web Cam set up, hopefully before the chicks arrive, then we can use it for Chick Watch! ;) If I have the Chick Cam working before the chicks arrive then I will post when I am leaving to pick up the chicks. ;D

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #189 on: May 17, 2010, 02:31:18 pm »
    I did get a shipping notification (I actually received two sent a minute apart. I hope this does not mean I am getting two boxes with 25 chicks each! ;D):
    Just a Reminder!

    Ship Date:5/17/2010
     
    Ship To:ANNA ...

    Your poultry order has been shipped today. You should expect delivery within 72 hours. If you have any problems, please report them within 4 days of arrival. We appreciate your business and are looking forward to providing you with "Ideal Poultry".
    Ideal Poultry Breeding Farms Inc.
    PO Box 591
    Cameron, TX 76520
    254-697-6677

    Offline B-Kay 1325

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #190 on: May 17, 2010, 07:16:41 pm »
    This is great news!  I will be chaperoning a middle school music department trip to Disneyland for the next few days with my DD#1 & GD, but I will have my netbook with me and will be checking on the delivery progress.

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #191 on: May 17, 2010, 07:54:21 pm »
    Both the replacement K2 and the Web Cam arrived at work today. Can you believe that my new-to-me refurb K2 is taking second place to the Web Cam? ;D

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #192 on: May 18, 2010, 05:29:47 am »
    No Webcam, messed up home network, posting from K2. Going offsite to attempt fix after turning on heat lamps and filling waterers.

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #193 on: May 18, 2010, 06:19:58 am »
    I am currently sitting outside our local public library using their wireless. I think I now know how to fix our router. I have to fix that in order to be able to work from home. First, however, I am off to Walmart to buy a thermometer for the brooder. I should not leave the wireless one in there with the chicks. ;) I hope the call to pickup the chicks is in 45 minutes and not tomorrow. ;D

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #194 on: May 18, 2010, 07:23:57 am »
    Posting from home after fixing router settings. However Webcam is still not connected to Internet. Picked up to outside thermometers and a box of parakeet grit (chick grit) at Walmart. I turned on the heat lamps and put two filled chick waterers in the brooder before leaving earlier this morning. Brooder is up to 80 F from 64 F. If it is not close to 95 F when I get the phone call from the post office (assuming they call today instead of tomorrow), then I will lower one of the lamps a bit before I leave to pick up the chicks.

    I am glad I woke up before my alarm went off this morning as I have been running around like a silly person (not a reference to chickens missing important bits  :o) this morning.

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #195 on: May 18, 2010, 08:36:39 am »
    Chicks must be coming tomorrow. I will think of today as a practice run. Back to focusing on work.

    Offline Betsy the Quilter

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #196 on: May 18, 2010, 10:33:17 am »
    We can't wait!!!

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    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #197 on: May 18, 2010, 12:22:11 pm »
    We can't wait!!!

    Betsy
    I am having a difficult time waiting as well. I went to lunch very early so that I could vote, stop at the post office to verify that the chicks were not there, buy some chicken scratch and two more bales of pine shavings, and then get some lunch. It seems similar to when I was buying accessories before my first Kindle arrived. (At least I should not have to find a home for my purchases due to receiving a different 'version' of chicks!) ;D I still have 1/3 bale left from the first bag of shavings and I will need to freeze nearly all of the 50 pound bag of scratch. ::) I bought the scratch so that I can give the chicks the smaller bits their first day or two; according to some sources it is supposed to keep them from "pasting up" as it is more like what they would eat first when raised by a hen. However after the first couple days, they aren't supposed to eat scratch until they are older. (Scratch is cracked grains which are high in fat and low in protein.) Instead they will be eating "chick starter" which is higher in protein, lower in fat, and has added vitamins and minerals.
    « Last Edit: May 18, 2010, 12:24:19 pm by Annalog »

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #198 on: May 18, 2010, 08:50:59 pm »
    Scratch in ~2 pound bags and in freezer. Used Magic Bullet to turn a cup of scratch into chick scratch. (First time I used it since I bought it on a clearance sale.) Timer set to turn on heat lamp by 5 AM. Web cam still not recognized in wireless mode. I will have to take normal pictures. ;D I am stopping before I am too tired. Early morning tomorrow.

    Offline Annalog

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    Re: Raising Chickens and Poultry
    « Reply #199 on: May 19, 2010, 07:59:32 am »
    The chicks have arrived!
    I was up early to turn the second brood light on; the first was on a timer and came on a few hours earlier. I went back inside to get my camera and the chick scratch and decided to carry the house phone out with me, even though it was about 40 minutes to 7 (time I was expecting the call). I was still outside at just after 6:30 when the phone rang. The chicks were waiting for me at the post office. I did not go back inside to post as I had my purse with keys and drivers license with me. I left to go get the chicks instead.

    At the post office I found my box of chicks on a table in the inside part of the outside loading dock. I pushed the buzzer to see if I needed to sign anything. I looked though the holes in the sides and the chicks seemed OK. I put the box of chirping chicks in the passenger seat and drove home. Chicks can be very noisy and some have distinctive cheeps.

    I opened the box in the coop and gave each chick a drink of water and put it in the brooder where there was food sprinkled on the paper towels and more water in a container.

    The chicks are drinking, eating, pooping, sleeping, and running around. They are peeping much more quietly now. I will post pictures soon.
    « Last Edit: May 19, 2011, 10:33:26 am by Annalog »

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