Safe Handling Techniques and Procedures for Baby Chicks
Practicing safe handling techniques protects both you and your chicks. Start off on the right foot by buying your chicks from a National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP) certified hatchery. This ensures the chicks arrive free of many poultry-specific diseases that could hurt them and you.
Clean and disinfect the brooder before the chicks even arrive; then keep everything in your chicks' enclosure area as clean as possible. Clean the feeder and waterer at least once per day, and disinfect once per week. Keep the bedding clean and dry by removing used, moist or caked bedding. Dispose of used bedding properly according to local regulations; composting it is usually the best solution.
Buy Southern States All Grain Start-N-Grow or other reputable chick starter, and store the feed in a cool, dry place off the ground. Keep the feed in a container with a sealable lid because feed often attracts rodents and other pests.
Wash your hands well with soap and water before handling your chicks, and keep an alcohol-based hand sanitizer around to make sure your hands are really clean afterward. If children handle your chicks, be sure to keep their hands out of their mouths.
If you've recently been to areas where other chickens or fowl have been, change your shoes and clothes before handling your chicks to avoid transmitting disease. Make sure visitors follow a similar protocol.
Socializing the Chicks
Try to avoid handling the chicks for the first couple of days they are in your brooder. They are getting used to new surroundings, and you don't want to rush them. On day three, place your hand in the box, and let them walk around it or hop on it. Use slow movements so you don't startle them. On day four, let them eat chick feed out of your hand.
Try to wait until day seven to hold your new chicks. When the time is right, pick them up just a few inches from the ground; if they seem skittish, delay another day or two. Never over-handle chicks that appear stressed. After they become used to being held, you can handle them at will.
Moving Your Chicks Outside
If you’re raising chicks, you’re probably wondering when you can move them from the brooder box to their permanent home outside. Your local climate...
How to Keep Baby Chicks Warm
Because it is essential that new chicks stay warm without overheating, it’s a good idea to prepare their brooder at least 24 hours before their...
Protecting Chickens from Predators
Whether you’re in an urban environment or surrounded by acres of land, other critters may want to cash in on the hard work you’re putting into...
Terms Every Chicken Owner Should Know
Newcomers to the world of raising chickens face a whirlwind of new terms and unfamiliar jargon associated with poultry production. Reviewing this...
Building A Chicken Coop
Step By Step Instructions
Building a chicken coop is the first step towards healthier living and saving you dollars at the grocery store. Find what you need to get started at...
Feeding Baby Chicks
How To Feed Your New Arrivals
You can easily provide chicks with a healthy, balanced diet using pre-formulated, store-bought feed. Usually sold as “chick starter feed” or “chick...
Keep Chickens Well Watered in Summer
Planning for summer chicken care will ensure that your flock has sufficient water on very hot days. The poultry experts at Southern States have some...
How To Care For New Chicks
More and more people each year become interested in raising a small flock of chickens for a hobby or to help lower the family food bills. Get your...
How to Set Up Your Brooder for New Chicks
A good brooder provides your chicks a safe, clean home with plenty of airflow, warmth, food and water. You can purchase new brooder elements, or you...
Chickens Missing Feathers
Treating Feather Loss In Chickens
It can be a bit unsettling when you notice one or more of your chickens are missing feathers. There can be many reasons for it. We have some helpful...
What To Expect With Your First Chicken Eggs
Questions and Answers
It's an exciting time when your hens have reached maturity and are ready to lay eggs. Most hens start to lay eggs around the age of 4 to 6 months...
Educating Your Children about Your Chickens
Backyard flocks can teach children about responsibility and where food comes from, but children must understand that there is a potential health risk...
Treating Common Chick Diseases
What To Look For And How To Treat Common Illnesses
Because chicks live in close quarters and easily can spread disease, raising a healthy flock requires constant vigilance. Watch for any signs of...
How to Care For Your New Baby Chicks
Whether you are raising chickens for eggs, meat, or as a hobby, you want to ensure that your brood stays healthy. The experts at Southern States know...
SKU 10003212The Miller Red Bulb for Brooder Lamp provides enough heat to keep small flocks of brooding chickens and other poultry warm. The red tint helps reduce stress and pecking. This long lasting bulb features 6000 hours of bulb life, making it the ideal bulb for your flock.
SKU 10003211The Miller Brooder Reflector Lamp provides your chicks with a warm, dry environment. The lamp features a 6' cord, a scratch-resistant ball joint clamp, double wire bulb guard and a heat-resistant ceramic socket for safety. The 10.5" aluminum shade also has a built-in hanger for added versatility. Use the Miller Brooder Reflector Lamp with a 300-watt maximum bulb, sold separately.
SKU 10003213Use the Miller Clear Heat Lamp Bulb to help maintain the warmth and comfort of your baby animals. This 250 watt/120 volt bulb is designed to provide enough heat for a small poultry flock. This alloy bulb features a non-stick base and up to 6,000 hours of bulb life.
SKU 10003450The Farm Innovators Digital Still Air Incubator does it all. The digital display shows temperature, humidity, and days to hatch and the Incutek Heater heats to factory pre-set of 100° F within minutes. A large picture window provides 360° unobstructed views inside incubator making it easy to observe. The deep bottom tray accommodates even large duck & goose eggs. Made with recycled and insulating polystyrene foam.
SKU 10004011Quickly and easily check the development of eggs using this lightweight Little Giant Egg Candler. This battery-operated light features a bright, energy-efficient LED bulb that runs cooler than traditional bulbs. The convenient cord-free design fits easily in a pocket and features a wrist strap. Uses one AAA battery (included).
SKU 10003449Farm innovators Pro Series Digital Circulated Air Incubator with Auto Egg Turner is fast and accurate - heating to factory pre-set temperature of 100 degrees within minutes. This Complete Incubator Kit has everything you need for a successful hatch, including an automatic egg turner. The Auto Egg Turner holds up to 42 eggs and turns the eggs completely every 4 hours to eliminate manual handling. This incubator features an integrated fan kit to pull in fresh air and stabilize temperature for improved hatching.
SKU 10003448This Digital Circulated Air Incubator with Incutek heater and integrated fan is fast and accurate - heating to factory pre-set temperature of 100 F within minutes. Easy to read LCD display shows temperature, humidity, and days to hatch - preset at 21 days and adjustable for a variety of eggs.
SKU 06648193The Farm Innovators Automatic Egg Turner automatically turns eggs every 4 hours, eliminating manual handling and improving the hatch rate. The egg turner is simple to use, just place in the bottom of an incubator and plug in, no assembly required. The Egg Turner is dishwasher safe; the egg rails snap out for easy cleaning. Holds up to 41 large eggs.