American Poultry Advocate, 30: 197 (March, 1922)

Raising Chicks
R. 2, Ulster, Pa.

This is the time of year when raising chicks is in the minds of most of the women on the farms as well as a good many others. Those of us who have raised some with more or less success are at all times trying to learn wherein we can improve our methods, while those who are just beginning in the poultry business are looking for reliable information on the subject. We have raised from 300 to 400 each year with what we called good success 10 in hopes that our experience may help some one else, I will give as definite as possible our methods.

My father and brother have followed the same rules, in fact have done so for about 10 years.

We have the chicks in the incubator for about 30 hours after hatching, gradually reducing the temperature to about 90 degrees. At night the chicks should be taken from the incubator and placed in the brooder which has been thoroughly warmed. The stove should be regulated too, before the chicks are placed in the brooder.

The next morning feed crumbled baked egg shells from which the chicks were hatched. Give them sour milk to drink as that helps to keep them from getting the much dreaded white diarrhoea. Three hours later sprinkle crystal grit over the latter. About noon sprinkle a few rolled oats in the latter which by the way, should consist of sand and alfalfa leaves or clover leaves; then two more small feedings of rolled oats two hours apart. The second day, feed five feedings of equal parts, pin head oat meal, and oat flake, about what they will eat in ten minutes. Great care should be taken not to over feed. Better keep them a little hungry.

The third day give four feedings of pin head oat meal. At noon feed hard boiled eggs, shells and all chopped with wheat bran and a little powdered charcoal. Grit and charcoal should be before them all the time. The fourth, fifth, and sixth day feed four times daily a good commercial chick feed mixed half and half with pin head oat meal or if the commercial feed is unavailable mix equal parts fine cracked corn, wheat and oat meal. Give the egg, bran and charcoal mixture at noon. Every day some succulent feed, such as sprouted oats, finely chopped lettuce or cabbage should be given.

On the seventh day put a box of bran in reach of chicks, gradually increasing the time of leaving it there until it is left before them all the time. A very shallow box should be used to prevent the chicks piling up and smothering each other All this time and as long as possible keep sour milk before them besides pour water to which a little potassium permanginate is added, now begin to gradually change from the chick feed to cracked grain feeding four times daily. The change should be made slowly.

By the eighth week they should be fed three times daily and the bran should gradually have been changed to the following mixture.

10 lbs. Bran.
5 lbs. Corn Meal.
5 lbs. Sifted Ground Oats.
2 lbs. Bone Meal.
1 lb. Meat Scrap.
5 lbs. Charcoal.

From now on the feed remains about the same. As soon as the ground is dry and warm the chicks are let out in a small yard. After about a week when they have learned to go back in the house, the wire may be lifted and chicks allowed to wander at will.