the new baby chicks were a little cranky when they first arrived

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the new baby chicks were a little cranky when they first arrived

I have 5 chickens currently and two are so old they can barely walk.  I don’t normally cull/euthanize them as I let them pick their own time to go or unfortunately sometimes a predator decides for them.  Today, I decided to start a new flock so I bought 8 baby chicks from Tractor Supply – I’m keeping the old flock also but I’ll probably keep them separated.  I use chickens to help recycle kitchen vegetable food waste so we send less to the landfill.  I also throw leaves that I rake up from the yard into their pen and I let them free range as much as possible in fenced in areas I’ve created.  Chickens are much more efficient at composting than using compost tumblers or compost piles.

I try to let them get as close to my garden as I can depending on the crop type and I think they help control insects so I can keep my garden more organic and use less pesticides.  I only use pesticides when I have no other choice and sometimes even then I don’t use them.  LOL.  I’ve lost entire crops to insects sometimes because I didn’t use pesticides.  And when that happens I feed the lost crops including the insects (if possible) to the chickens.  Of course another benefit of having chickens are eggs.

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I find it ironic that the box i brought them home in is shaped a lot like a KFC box.  A few interesting notes about terminology.  If you buy straight run chickens of any breed then that means it contains males and females randomly since with most breeds you can’t easily distinguish between males and females when they are young.  If you buy pullets only then it only contains females.

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The low here in Florida tonight is 62 degrees Fahrenheit so that’s a wee bit chilly for young chicks as you can tell by them huddling close together to stay warm.  I hooked up a 75 watt incandescent light bulb to give them a tad bit of heat to get them through the night.  The government has cracked down on the old light bulb types so it’s getting harder to find them when you really need them for their heat.  The gov wants everyone to buy the new non-incandescent types that are more energy efficient and give off little heat.  I’m ok with that because it makes the country more energy efficient but it doesn’t make it any easier for me raising baby chicks.

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