Every spring we have a new project for our homeschooling adventures. This year we decided to raise chickens! We found some plans online for a nifty little coop, David scrounged some supplies from the barn and leftover materials, and with a few baby chicks, we were on our way!
We chose Cackle Hatchery for our chicken resource. They are close enough to drive to (Lebanon, Mo.) and have every breed of chicken imaginable. It was important for us to get some silkies along with our egg-layers. We had them when I was a girl, and they are just so much fun!
March 4, 2010 – The hatchery storefront is packed with chicks of all kinds in lighted bins, along with turkeys, ducks, guineas, and other baby birds. We had only ordered 15 chicks (5 buff orpingtons for egg-layers, 5 white silky bantams, and 5 blue silky bantams), but the Amish were there picking up virtual pallets of pullets!
Drew couldn’t resist a little peek on the way home!
We placed them in their indoor box, lined with pine shavings, and set up their feed and water dishes and a thermometer. They must be kept at 95 degrees their first week, 90 the second week, 85 the third, and so on, until they are ready to go outside. Peaches, our dog, thinks we bring home baby animals just for her. She’s already trying to mother them!
A red heat lamp will do the trick for keeping these babies warm. How many people can say they have their own Red Light District full of chicks?
It’s been a hard day – sleepytime for little ones!