Isabrowneyedsues Chicken Brooder

By isabrowneyedsue · Jan 11, 2012 · ·
  1. isabrowneyedsue
    Hi! I'm Rebecca,my family and I live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Last summer we got our first flock of chickens from an older farmer who had too many. WE LOVE THEM. We love eggs, and even though the chickens are older, they still layed enough eggs for our family of four. this winter quite a few of them died, so we are trying our hand at raising replacements. They are growing so fast, and they are so darn funny! I like to think we are doing a good job, we haven't lost any chicks, and they seem so happy and healthy! I now am tempted to try and incubate some eggs from my browns but, I have to make an incubator first, so I guess that is my next project!!

    Our Homemade Yooper Brooder

    it's a plastic toddler pool that someone threw away because it was cracked
    at first we just put the chicks in it with no wire, but then they learned how to jump
    so we wrapped chicken wire around it and zip tied it together.
    the wire alone wasn't strong enough to hold the lamp so we got some 2 x 8 lattice from menards ( 11.00 )
    and that really firmed it up, i also bought a garden steak for 1.50 and that is what the light hangs on. i used a couple scrap
    1 x 2's under the garden steak to keep the light from wobbling.
    i hung a thermometer near the floor to keep track of the temp, put in the feeders and water fountains, pine shavings, chicks!
    they seem to be really happy! they have plenty of room to move and play.
    we have them in our dining room right now because in northern michigan it's really cold still
    and that just adds to their social life. the kids hold them and they are really used to us being around.
    i was really worried that our cats would jump over the top, so i was going to make a cover out of chicken wire,
    but the cats don't bother it, the chicken wire we used is 36" tall, and that seems to be enough.



    so, the total cost for our yooper brooder:
    plastic toddler pool - free in the alley
    chicken wire - free i had scrap
    heat lamp - free i had an old one in the garage
    zip ties - 2.00 menards
    plastic lattice - 11.00 menards
    1x2 - free i used scraps
    green garden steak - 1.50 menards
    bedding - 5.00 tsc
    under 20 bucks, and about 30 minutes of my time.
    yes, we are red necks. yes, we like it

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Recent User Reviews

  1. ronott1
    "good article"
    4/5, 4 out of 5, reviewed Aug 23, 2018
    Nice Build!

    Remember to continue feeding your flock good chicken feed in the winter
  2. Hope Hughes
    "Nice build"
    4/5, 4 out of 5, reviewed Jul 28, 2018
    We have friends in the UP, absolutely love the people and how beautiful it is there!! Thanks for the post gave me a good idea about the fencing to put around it.
  3. rjohns39
    "Nicely done"
    5/5, 5 out of 5, reviewed Jul 22, 2018


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  1. Finge
    huh how do you keep the brooder from smelling? We had a brooder and it stunk matter how many times we cleaned it!
  2. Itty Bitties
    I love this brooder... easy clean up and thats a big thing for me lol
  3. suncatcher
    I like this one too! Could put up roofind felt on the sides if needed for drafts.
  4. isabrowneyedsue
    Oh, and if you put ducks in it, make sure you tape up any cracks.....those ducklings really make a mess!!
  5. isabrowneyedsue
    The lamp was about 25 inches above the chicks, so they never hit it or anything. My only suggestion is, if you have it in your house like we did, to wrap a sheet or some kind of sheer material around it because chicks are really really dusty! This worked great, and when we aren't using it i flatten out the chicken wire/lattice and store it in the garage.....
  6. RaisingMeadows
    MicheleRoe - I think the really close lamps are using regular incandescent bulbs instead of infrared heat lamps. I've used a normal 100 watt bulb with no problems in the past but I did have to put the lamp pretty close the first week or two.
  7. Dirt Girl
    This is just what I was looking for. Going to repurpose the kids' play pool for a bit! Thanks!
  8. MicheleRoe
    Great Idea!!! I'm from S.C. and that does not look redneck to me! ;o) It looks thrify! I notice your lamp is about the same distance as mine. Are your chicks indoors? I just noticed in some of the pics that the lamp is only about 12" -18" from the chicks. Just seems close to me. Especially if mine are indoors anyway.
  9. RuidosoBill
    Too cute, I want one.
  10. ChickensAreSweet

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