Friday, December 11, 2015

Raise Poultry In Clay County Florida

Raising poultry can be an enjoyable hobby.

Clay County is in Northeast Florida, along the banks of the St. John's River, and the state's mild winters make it an excellent location for raising poultry. Florida hatcheries produce new chicks year-round, but spring is the best time to start a new flock because of the warm spring weather. Contact the Clay County Extension Office for recommendations on what breeds of chickens to raise.


1. Check with Clay County government and your city government if you live in the city limits to insure that poultry is allowed and what rules must be followed. As of May 2011, Clay County doesn't have ordinances that restrict poultry within the county but cities might.

2. Order chicks from an on line hatchery or from a local hatchery or breeder. Check with the Clay County Extension Office for an up-to-date list of local hatcheries and breeders.

3. Set up a brooder three days before the chicks arrive to allow the area to get warm. Place the brooder in an area that is free of drafts and sheltered from rain and other weather. Because Clay County's weather is warm, the brooder doesn't need to be insulated.

4. Place a heat lamp 18 inches above the floor of the brooder and turn the lamp on. Place a thermometer in the brooder to monitor the temperature. The temperature should be about 93 degrees the first week. Raise the heat lamp each week to decrease the temperature by five degrees. By six weeks, the chicks will have enough feathers to keep warm and will no longer need the lamp.

5. Place pine shavings or other litter in the bottom of the brooder. The shavings should be changed every two to three days to keep the area clean and sanitary.

6. Mix 1 1/2 cups of sugar in a gallon of water and pour it into ice cube trays to give the chicks an energy boost the first day. Gently dip each chicks beak into the water briefly as you place them in the brooder. This will ensure they know where the water is. After the first day, give chicks fresh water daily.

7. Place chick starter-grower feed in a feeding tray or feeding tube. Fill the trays only halfway so the chicks don't waste the food when they scratch. Make sure the chicks always have access to food.

Tags: Clay County, Check with, Check with Clay, Clay County Extension, County Extension