The chicks are growing!
Since they’re getting bigger and are two weeks old now, we moved them to a larger brooder. Once they get to be two weeks old, they need 1 square foot per bird of space.
We have also raised the heat lamp a few inches, bringing the temperature down to 90 degrees or so. The chicks are starting to get their wing feathers and a few of them are also getting tail feathers! (That always makes me think of Nelly’s Shake Ya Tailfeather)
It was a pretty uneventful week with the chicks. I changed their bedding once, because they spilled their water all over it. I also refilled their waterer and feeder several times this week. Those little babies drink a lot! Towards the end of the week I took the marbles out of the waterer and they seem to be doing fine with that. We did have one chick that started pasting up, which is where their droppings cake up and block their vent opening. This prevents the chick from passing any more droppings and can kill it if it’s not taken care of. All I had to do was apply a warm paper towel to her rear end to clean it up and it hasn’t happened again. Once it happens it’s important to keep an eye on the chick, though, as it can happen again. However, it usually only happens during their first week and she hasn’t gotten that way anymore.
There was one incident this week, aside from the chick pasting up. I was out in the garage with the chicks, and someone opened the door to the basement and Hank ran in. We have let him in the garage a few times to see them (and see what the “peeping” noise was) and he mostly just sniffed them like crazy and stared at them. Well apparently we’re past that point, because he ran right in, stuck his head down in the brooder and tried to snatch one up. Luckily I grabbed him in time, and no one was hurt! This is a reenactment, with Barry standing by to hang on to Hank.
One other thing we started working on this week is the coop that the chicks will move into once they have their feathers. We are planning on converting the storage building in our backyard.
This week that involved moving the wood out of the building into another building we have. In the coming weeks we will be cleaning it out, creating a door, building nesting boxes and roosting areas, and attaching an outdoor chicken run area.