48 hours, 36 chicks

Things I have learned in the first two days:

  • You will immediately learn the difference between happy chirping/tweeting and annoyed/unhappy/etc.

  • They (seem to) have absolutely no regard for each other! They will happily walk over another chick (usually several, waking them all up) to get where they want to be. I’m hoping this happens less when they get older.

  • They don’t need that much space! I was originally horrified at the close quarters they had them in, but it appears that (for now) 9 sq ft./.8 sq m is more than enough room including feeding trough and waterer.

  • They are pretty low-maintenance. As long as they have water and food, you can pretty much leave them alone.

  • After being settled, they get quite skittish and don’t want to be picked up. Any sort of movement in the area will frighten them and cause a ripple effect.

  • They are quickly growing up: it’s the third morning and they are already moving further away from the lamp. I will have to raise it tomorrow so they don’t get too hot.

  • They are quite lazy: eat, drink, sleep. This may be partially because of their age, but the literature I've read said that most of these breeds (White Rock/Cornish Cross/Meat Kings) have been purposefully bred to just consume calories and get fat. It's unfortunate and for next year I will be talking to some people about getting other types.

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…and the final lesson I’ve learned: anyone can do this.

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