How To Stock Reliably
You may be thinking about welcoming new chicks into your flock. Or maybe you have never owned chickens and you are not sure where to start.
For guidance on stocking, read more here about:
Where to buy chicks
Introducing new birds to your flock
How to ensure you are buying healthy chickens
It is important to note that while all fluffy chicks look adorable, they may not all be healthy and safe to bring home. For this reason, chickens should only be bought from reputable sources. But not to worry! If a source is a member of the National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP), you can rest easy knowing your new addition is egg-cellent. The NPIP is a cooperative testing and certification program that makes sure that poultry meets certain vaccination and health standards before being sold.
Curious to see which hatcheries and farms have a clean status in your state? Use this map resource to find out.
LATEST BLOG POSTS ON THIS TOPIC:
Basic Health Assessment of Chicks
If you are purchasing and/or raising baby chicks, it is important to regularly monitor their health to ensure they are thriving. In this article, we will discuss how to make a basic health assessment of baby chicks. Appearance The first thing to look at when assessing the health of a baby chick is their appearance. Healthy chicks should have bright, alert eyes and clean, fluffy feathers. They should also be active and moving around, rather than huddled in a corner. If a chick appears lethargic, or has a drooping head or wings, or is standing with one leg tucked
The Basics of Incubating Hatching Eggs
Due to the life changing events of the global pandemic, many people have taken up new hobbies such as baking bread or curling. One less confusing hobby many people have dabbled in is hatching chicken eggs. When I was in elementary school, we incubated and hatched our own set of chicken eggs. We would take turns watching the eggs, checking the incubators temperature and humidity, and turning the eggs. We only had the eggs for about three weeks before they all hatched, and we got to see a bundle of cute chicks running around the class. A good time
Setting Up a Brooder
The goal of the brooder is to simulate the environment that would normally be present for chicks after hatching. In other words, the brooder keeps your chicks safe, warm, fed and watered. Big picture, your brooder should: Be free from drafts but have good ventilation to prevent ammonia build-up Prevent rodents and predators from access Warm and cozy Have access to proper feed and clean water Have bedding like rice hulls or wood shavings Here are a few other handy brooder hints: Brooder Space Set up your brooder space as a ring with approximately 0.5-1.0 square feet per
Sources of Baby Chicks
From a disease, welfare and husbandry perspective, the best place you can source your fertilized eggs or baby chicks from is a farm or hatchery that is part of the National Poultry Improvement Program (NPIP). To be NPIP certified as a hatchery means that the birds on the farm are tested for various diseases possibly including Salmonella (it depends on which level of NPIP certification the farm/hatchery has) which can cause your eggs to be contaminated with a foodborne pathogen (aka it can get you sick). From a poultry health perspective NPIP requires testing for various other infectious diseases
Don’t Wing It: All You Need To Know About Stocking Reliably
Sunshine is here again! The threat of Virulent Newcastle Disease has been banished for now, so some of you may be thinking about welcoming chicks into your homes again. But where should you go to get chickens? Are all hatcheries the same? We’ll give you the inside s-coop here. Not all hatcheries are created equal While all fluffy chicks look adorable, they may not all be healthy and safe to bring home. For this reason, only purchase chicks from reputable sources. But not to worry! If a hatchery or other seller is a member of the National Poultry
First Day Nerves: Introducing A New Bird To Your Flock
Adding a new bird to your flock takes a watchful eye and some trial and error. For chickens, in particular, flocks naturally have an established social hierarchy called the pecking order. Though chickens have different methods of communication, including using distinct calls and whistles, new members of the flock might be welcomed with aggression and some pecking. A bit of fighting and roughhousing should be expected while your chickens are figuring out how the new member fits in the aforementioned pecking order. Here are some guidelines and tips for introducing new birds to your flock. The Pecking Order The