Brooder has metal wire/mesh floor. Is that okay for baby chick feet?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by khd, Sep 4, 2009.

  1. khd

    khd Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 4, 2009
    I know I should use paper towels over the floor the first few days, but after that, can the chicks walk on the metal wire floor? Or should I put cardboard down and then use the pine pellets? I like the idea of the metal since there's a sliding tray underneath to catch droppings, but want to do the best thing for their growing feet, too.

    I have tried unsuccessfully to search the archives and know this must be a common question, so pardon the redundancy.
  2. Lensters

    Lensters Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2009
    Adair Village, OR
    Thousands of chicks a week use these brooders without problem.
  3. ShaggysGirl

    ShaggysGirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 24, 2009
    Temperance, MI
    I used paper towel for a week then they walk on the wire till they go out to the coop.
    I have to admit at first I was worried since they can't scratch on the wire but they all did ok.
    This is the hutch we are using for brooding. So much cleaner than the totes we used to use.
  4. khd

    khd Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 4, 2009
    Thank you both so much. And great brooder photo! You've both made me feel better about the wire/metal floor. I appreciate it.
  5. Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Apr 20, 2008
    Birnamwood, Wisconsin
    I hate the wire for flooring but that's just my Opinion. There are many out here who do that and many who are against it. Just do what you think is best and if you see feet problems I would just change it out. I would however give them a place to dust bath or get off the wire if they wanted to. It just seems cruel to me to have ONLY wire for a floor [​IMG] No bashing please...Just my opinion [​IMG]
  6. khd

    khd Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 4, 2009
    I respect your opinion, too. I'm totally new at this and just want to do what's best. So for the dust bath, what bedding allows that? Is that with the pine pellets? I'm thinking about doing a cardboard floor and bedding for at least part of the brooder to see what they prefer.
  7. magsrags

    magsrags Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 12, 2008
    Staten Island NY
    Raising new hatched peeps on wire "might not" be the very first best option. Give them something to hold onto like the cardboard menioned above etc. Even cover it with some paper towels. they are so unsure footed I don't understtand how anyone can use wire underofoot for the first couple of weeks.
    they need to "get their feet straight fist.
    The wire hasn't ever been a problem for me weeks later............Just my humble opinion. :<)
  8. patricium

    patricium Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 28, 2009
    Western New York
    We have one of the metal box brooders with the hardware cloth floor. We raised 5 bantams and 3 regular sized chicks there. For the first couple weeks, we lined it with paper towels in the high-traffic areas around the feed and water, and in the back near the heat source. We gave them an unfinished wooden inbox tray with some food to scratch in - they loved that. At about 2 weeks, they started trying to eat the paper towels, so we stopped doing that. After that, I cut up some old fleece fabric scraps so they always had a pad to sleep on. The pads do get poopy, so I flip them once, then throw them out the second day. The chicks seemed fine walking on the wire, though they definitely all slept on the pads for the first 4-5 weeks.
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2009
  9. 46hillbilly

    46hillbilly Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 30, 2012
    Try carpet samples too; or get remnants and cut to fit needs; can be hosed off if synthetics. Cheap to get too; Carpet that is industrial is nearly smooth and will clean easily. These are fast to change as well.
    Miss Guinea Longtail likes this.

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