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Making our own brooder - thoughts, comments?

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Hi all!

 

So we are getting chicks this week, and right now we have a 30-gallon tote set up as a brooder. We have a hanging heat lamp, food and water dispensers, and about an inch of pine shavings (plus extra of course).

 

I was thinking of making something bigger, and wondered what you thought of this.  This is a material that you can get cheap at Home Depot, and I have seen mini-brooders mad bout of the same stuff.

 

Corrugated plastic sheets

 

A 6' by 3' panel costs $14.  From one such panel I could make a 2' x 3' piece and a 4' x 3' piece.  If I did that twice, and got another piece for the bottom, I could make a lightweight and sturdy brooder that is four feet long, two feet wide, and three feet high.  Or four feet long, three feet wide, and two feet high.

This would give our six chicks a ton of room to run and play.  I was thinking of putting a nesting box at one end, with just a 1" lip to keep the pine shavings in, with the heat lamp suspended over that.

 

Comments and advice are welcome.  Thanks!!

post #2 of 3

Do you have a coop already built? If not, better get busy. You'll need it when the chicks are a month old.

 

If you've been on the ball, and the coop is ready, why not just brood outdoors right in the coop?

 

I brood in a safe pen in my enclosed run, and the chicks have tons of room, and even more benefits from being outside in a natural environment. I also tossed the heat lamp and use a heating pad. Much safer and more comfortable for the chicks.

 

Just tossing an alternative out there. I've linked to an article I wrote about how to brood outdoors and all the reasons. It's below this post under "Article by azygous".

post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

That's great, thanks!  The coop is not ready yet, but it will be in a month.  I've heard all kinds of estimates on when the chicks will be feathered, from five weeks to eight weeks.

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