Updated: Jul 2, 2020
So many questions ran across my mind when I first decided to become a chick mom. What kind of chicks should I pick? Which type of chick will lay the most eggs? Should I get a rooster? Do I even need a rooster? Do I want brown eggs, white eggs, or both? Do I want to eat them? Etc. etc.
Eventually, I decided to get four Austra Whites all female which is a hybrid mixed with a black Australorp rooster and a white Leghorn. According to research, they are great egg layers and great for meat production. I wanted them for eggs-only, but I didn't count out the idea of using them for meat either.
When they finally arrived they were so beautiful and the Chicken Farm sent me a bonus chick to love on, the more the merrier were my thoughts.The neighborhood mailman made a special trip to deliver them on his first stop. I wasn't ready. I ain't gonna lie.
Chick Starter is the 'proper' food to feed your baby chicks. I didn't have that so I crushed up Cherios, grits, & chicken grit and fed it to them. I put a drop of Organic Apple Cider Vinegar in their water to keep their water fresh, prevent worms, relieve stress, and boost their Immune System. I heard that Apple Cider can treat Diarea also, but I had paid to have their shots taken before they were delivered so I'd hoped that no illnesses would pop up and it didn't.
After the second week, the chicks had formed their own personalities, their own habits, and had grew impatient with the cardboard box that I had set up for them. I knew they would have to stay in the house for five to six weeks but I felt really bad about leaving them in this huge box day in and day out. I wanted them to feel the grass, stretch their wings, catch bugs, in other words practice being a chicken.
Well, that turned out to be a Huge mistake because I lost three chicks in one day. We went outside under my supervision and my naivete. It was miday on a Monday in March 2020. The chicks were running around the yard exploring while I'm looking out for any four-legged animal that could cause them harm. Well folks, it wasn't the four legged animals that took them away....it was a group of Crows that swooped down and picked them up alive and flew away. I was only able to save two. I think I cried for a week.
These chicks are our babies and I failed as a new chick mom. I replaced the three I lost and one died for unknown reasons and this loss was just as traumatic. My latest batch of chicks are Leghorns, Production Red, and three more Australorps all female except for three out of ten. I have a covered chicken run when they go outside for a few hours a day. A nice compromise for all of us.
So to all the new chick moms, my message to you is to protect your babies because everything and everyone loves to eat chicken.