Once they arrived, I kept them in a brooder that I made a few years back which provides warmth through 2 heat lamps. This year we decided to keep the chicks up at the house so that we could keep a better eye on them and also because the shade of our front porch offers a cool open air place that keeps the chicks dry. After a couple of weeks the chicks were getting too big for the brooder, so moved them to an area outside in the grass of my lawn. I used a 10x10 chain link dog pen which has a roof and in the middle I placed a very large box. This box offered more room than the brooder and after a week or so, I could begin to move the box to a new location within the pen which introduced the chicks to fresh grass. The dog pen serves 2 roles at this point: 1) offering sun/rain protection with the roof, 2) keeps predators (feral cats, raccoons, coyotes) out. Recently, we have enclosed an area of my lawn with a portable electric netting. From now on, I keep the dog pen in the center of the netted area and let the chicks roam around free during the day. At night, I herd the turkeys inside the pen for protection (nighttime is typically when the predators strike). The turkey chicks will mow down the grass in 2-3 weeks so when the grass gets short, I will just moved the netting, turkeys, and pen to a new location!
Below, I've included a few pictures of the turkey chicks from this year. Also, there is a YouTube video of they turkeys I raised last year. Like last year, I am raising broad breasted bronze turkeys. Also, in the next few weeks I will send a few details to you by email in case you are interested in having a Sugar Creek turkey on your Thanksgiving table!
|Special Delivery! Riding home from the post office!|
|A close up|
|The chicks are getting used to their new brooder|
|I've found a new way to weed|
the garden beside my house
|The new pointer puppies really enjoy|
watching the birds!