So, I'll be the first to admit that I need hatch-a-holics anonymous, but who can really blame me?
There are few things in this life that gives such pleasure. And now that my flock has done the full year cycle, I can add grand chicks to my list of favorite beings on this earth!
If you are interested in hatching your own eggs, without a broody hen's help, or if you are just interested in getting day old chicks there are just a few things that you will need. This is by no means a complete list, but it will get you started!
- Fertilized Eggs *hatching
- Incubator *hatching
- Patience :) whether ordering or hatching the wait is horrible!
- Brooder Area
- Grow Out Area
- Chick Grower/Starter
- Fresh Water
- Small feeder and waterer
- Chick Fresh!
- Coop Care All Purpose Cleaner
1. Fertilized eggs are a given. There are a lot of ways to get these even if you don't have your own flock. I have hatched several batches from local breeders and have also tried my hand at some that have come through the mail. Each has been successful and you can feel safe in doing a mail order as long as you've done your homework first.
2. Incubator... My favorite is the Nurture Right 360 but I know that there are many other's that are just as good and possibly even better. I did learn the hard way that when it comes to an incubator, you get what you paid for. Don't skimp in this area. You can have severe health issues if your 21 day incubation isn't kept at a consistent temperature and humidity, etc. More on that story another time.
3. Patience...when hatching it is the LONGEST 21 days EVER and often longer than that if you are ordering.
5. Grow out area. I usually use a Pet Playpen but it can be just about anything that gives them the room to grow
6. Chick Grower/Starter. For the first 3 weeks of their life, the chicks need to be on a starter crumbles. If they have been vaccinated, you will not need medicated feed but if you are not vaccinating, then you will want the medicated formula. After 3 weeks and until they reach laying age you will want to use Chick Grower.
7. Fresh Water. Daily, sometimes more than once a day. Depending on what you use in the brooder and grow out area you may have to change the water very frequently. I start my chicks out on shelf liner paper so it doesn't get too messy until I switch over to the pine shavings.
8. Small waterer and feeder. These can grow with the chicks, but remember at the beginning they need to be small enough that the chicks can access everything easily. I made the mistake one time of not putting marbles or something in the waterer and woke up to a chick that drowned overnight. It was a horrible feeling knowing that I could have prevented that.
9. Chick Fresh!!!! Our Chick Fresh is amazing and smells SO GOOD! Brooders and Grow Out pens are absolutely The. Worst. All it takes it a couple of sprays every day and you can enjoy the chirps and not have to deal with the smell of the littles! I share my home office with the chicks, believe me... it works! Get yours here
10. Coop Care All Purpose Cleaner... a true game changer! All natural, safe for you and your family and the animals. You don't have to remove anyone to use this cleaner. The ProH technology lowers the pH level in the environment so that it is not conducive to viruses, bacteria, algae etc. Just an extra layer of protection against your littles and tragedy. You can get both products for a limited time special here.
I use it religiously to clean and prepare my incubators for the next set and I know that it is safe for the next eggs and babies!
Until next time,
Stay Safe and Healthy