I decided to join the 4th annual backyard chickens New Years Day hatch-a-long contest this year - and thus am anxiously waiting for the eggs from my swap partner to arrive. I have no idea what type of poultry I will receive - nor how many will hatch. I hear there will be at least 40 eggs in my box and I am super excited about that since I lost all my chickens two years ago. I do have four hens right now that I raised from babies this spring - but that is it and they have yet to lay.
In preparation for the arrival of the eggs - which are to be put into the incubator on December 11th - I have had my incubator brought down. It will need cleaned and checked to make sure it is working ok and that the temperature is holding steady.
I also bought nine chicken starter kits today from our local farm store. Inside each kit was a small bag of chick starter, a watering dish, a feed dish, a roll of corrugated cardboard (it can be used to make a pen, but I am not likely to do that since we have predators here), coupons and of course all of it came in a cardboard carrying case which is an ideal method of transporting young chicks.
Still on the list to buy is six to eight large plastic tubs to house the chickens in. Heat lamps for each tubs. Adjustable screens for the top of each tub - and bedding which will be made out of newspaper. That will be free - and my stack is started.
The initial outlay for the items needed to raise this many young chicks is costly. I figure I will end up spending around $200.00 for everything I need to properly raise these baby chicks. That might seem like a lot, but as soon as the chicks outgrow their baby cages, I will wash and store the items. They will last for a number of years as long as they are taken care of and thus in the end I will more than get my initial investment back.
Author - The Complete Idiot's Guide To Year Round Gardening, The Complete Idiot's Guide To Seed Saving & Starting, 101 English Garden Tips, Magical Gardens, Perspective Visions: Enigmatic Masterpieces. Visit http://www.experimentalhomesteader.com
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