Baby chick season is underway.
The Big R store in Falcon received its first shipment of chicks on Wednesday. I asked Jessica Metts, an employee in the feed and tack department, what essentials people should know when buying baby chicks.
No. 1 is a heat source for the fragile chicks, she said. Fresh water is also importand so is a medicated feed if the chicks aren’t vaccinated.
Metts stressed how fragile the chicks are and how dependent they are on a heat source and a stable environment. Don’t buy a group of baby chicks and then let them sit in the car for hours while you run errands; get them home quickly and into a warm, protected space. Young birds often carry salmonella, so practice good hygiene.
“If you’re a brand-new chick owner, don’t be intimidated, but don’t be naive about it,” Metts cautions. “They are babies; they do need a lot of attention.”
Look for more on raising chickens in Tuesday’s The Country Life column.