Chicks Week 2 through 4

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I’m getting a little behind on my chick posting, so I thought I’d group weeks 2 through 4 all together. I can’t believe the chicks are one month old already! Yes, time flies when you’re to busy to stop & check the calendar.

At 2 weeks, the chicks are just starting to show signs up grown-up feathers. The baby fluff is melting away. I put veggie scraps in their bowl but they peck & scratch & toss the scraps all over the pen. They’re just toddlers playing with their food.

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 At 3 weeks, they’re starting to look like the little mutant meat makers they were born to be.

Doesn’t he look tasty! Like a chunky little chicken nugget.

They are starting to fill out and put some meat on their bones. This little guy is puffing himself up. I’m not sure, but I guess he’s probably trying to keep warm. They’re living in the garage, in a pen. I kept the heat lamp on them just for night time.

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4 weeks old & the chicks have finally flown the coop! I don’t usually wait so long to move them outside, but it’s been so cold & I didn’t want to wake up one morning & find a batch of chick-cicles. Monday, they finally ventured into the great outdoors.

I just fed them before taking this pic, that’s why they’re all huddled at one end. Don’t get between a broiler & his food. You’d be safer sticking your arm in a tank full of piranhas!

Half the batch moved into our regular broiler shelter that sits on the ground. I hate keeping my chicks caged up, but these shelters keep them safe from opossum vampires & neighbor dogs. The pens are portable, so they get fresh grass every couple of days. Maybe this summer I will take pics of the pasture before & after. The chickens & turkeys eat the grass right down to nubs & a week later, the grass grows in a strong, dark green. It’s kind of like magic, but not. I’m sure there’s a fascinating scientific reason. All I know is, the chicks are healthy & the grass is healthy.
 That wire cage on the end of the pen (above) is a live trap. I do this at every pen so I don’t wake up one morning & find baby chick legs scattered all over the yard. Yes, it has happened. When you put vulnerable, little, baby animals outside, you have to be vigilant about their safety. I’ve kept them alive this long. I can’t let any wild & hairy beasts eat them before I do!

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The other half of the batch moved into the little red house. We usually reserve this for laying hens, but I may have overdone it on the chick ordering this year. I can’t help it, they’re just so tasty! They still can’t fly up into the house, so every night I have to go out & give them a boost. But, it’s dry and safe from opossums & racoons & neighbor dogs. Hopefully, I’ll have more broiler pens built soon. The broiler pen is just one piece & much lighter than the little red house. I can move it by myself, which is handy. 

Now that it’s warm enough to move the chicks outside, it has rained nonstop, for 3 days. Oh well, I prefer that to snow!

Posted in Farm Life.