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aquarium brooder

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ApplestoApples, Nov 23, 2012.

  1. ApplestoApples

    ApplestoApples Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 19, 2012
    East Tenessee
    I have a ffew old aquariums sitting around, and have read threads on using those as brooders. My question is if I will be able to keep fish or reptiles in the aquarium after the chickes have grown up? Also what is the ratio of floor space per chick in a brooder?
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012
  2. 5SweetChicks

    5SweetChicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oct 28, 2012
    Michigan
    I'm not sure about the ratio, but if you want to keep animals in the tank afterwards, I bet just soap and cleaning it will be okay.
     
  3. ApplestoApples

    ApplestoApples Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 19, 2012
    East Tenessee
    Ok, thanks. On the tank is an undertank heater for reptiles that heats up the floor of the tank. Will that be sufficient for tahe chicks or do they need a heat lamp?
     
  4. yinepu

    yinepu Overrun With Chickens

    I'm not sure how many chicks you are expecting and how big your tank is.. that makes a difference (a tiny 10 gallon tank with a 100 watt bulb will probably give you cooked chicks). I've used aquariums a lot for quail and small numbers of chicks or ducklings.

    Personally.. I would use a "heat lamp" and not use the under tank heater (chicks brood UNDER momma)..
    If using a lamp (I always use a plain ol desk lamp with a regular light bulb) make sure there is plenty of room for the chicks to get away from the heat. Be sure check the temp in the tank so you know for sure it doesn't get too hot. The chicks will let you know by their actions if they are too hot or too cold.. so be sure to pay attention to how they act.
    It's always a good idea to monitor the temps in an aquarium so you can make sure they don't cook while you're asleep just to be on the safe side.

    One other thing to keep in mind is to make sure it has adequate ventilation. Ammonia can build up pretty fast in an aquarium .. so keeping it clean and dry is major.
     
  5. yinepu

    yinepu Overrun With Chickens

    if you wash with soap make sure you remove all the soapy residue.. fish and soap don't work and play nice together.. so a few good rinses with white vinegar and then water would help. i would also allow extra time for the tank to cycle before adding fish since any remaining organic material would cause an ammonia spike.. sometimes even if it LOOKS clean there is still something left behind in the gap between the silicone calking and the glass. So a good test kit would help monitor that.

    I have a 55 gallon tank now with fish in it that had been used as a quail brooder (it held a lot of baby quail !.. )
     
  6. ApplestoApples

    ApplestoApples Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 19, 2012
    East Tenessee
    Would a 29 gallon aquarium hold 6 chicks until they go to the coop?
     
  7. yinepu

    yinepu Overrun With Chickens

    a 29 gallon would be fine.. just make sure they don't get too crowded as they grow (I'm not sure how big you want them to be before they move outside).. If they have room to move around.. lay down.. eat.. get away from the heat if they are too warm and so on.. then they have plenty of room..

    If they start to look too big for the 29 (but aren't feathered out enough to go outside) then you can always move them to a large rubbermaid type tote with some hardware cloth across the top as a lid.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012
  8. ApplestoApples

    ApplestoApples Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 19, 2012
    East Tenessee
    Cool. My mom just told me she is going to feet a kiddie pool and we could use that, but thaanks anyway.
     

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