Brooder location question

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by luckydux, Jan 16, 2013.

  1. luckydux

    luckydux Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ARKANSAWWW!!
    I'm debating a location to put a brooder or 2 and wanted to get some opinions. Brooders are plywood and I can make them as sealed as need be. I just put up a couple of those carports that you probably see everywhere and I closed the sidewalls and one of the end walls to the ground and will build large swinging doors for the other end but it will have a gap at the top and below. Its basically an uninsulated tin shed with swinging doors.
    With no drafts and heat lamps in the brooder, does this sound feasible?
     
  2. OreoPlymothRock

    OreoPlymothRock Chillin' With My Peeps

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    you need a heat lamp. I brooded my chicks with a simple desk lamp, but I had a heating pad on the floor with a thin towel on top.
     
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Sounds about like my barn, it's wood but not insulated or heated, and I keep a window open for air. I brood all my chicks there--no brooding in the house!!! Just adjust your heat lamp for a good warm temp under it, and be sure your brooder is big enough the chicks have a good amount of space for a cool end.
     
  4. LukensFarms

    LukensFarms Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are a million ways to brood chicks. Most people just use a light but I highly suggest a low enclosure with a heating element on a thermostat. Chicks can fly into lights and break bulbs which then causes chicks to get cold and die. Low enclosures make chicks feel more safe. They cry less and are more content. I think the ultimate setup is an indoor outdoor system like a real mother. They go in a tight dark heated space for warmth and rest. They come out to eat, drink, and play.
     
  5. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    I also used an outdoor setup in a semi-closed area. Really, it was a wooden box with a wire lid scooted next to the house on a covered patio. I had a half-closed lid for the first week and used it on colder days/nights and a full-wire lid for warmer weather. Everything latched on securely because the raccoons have no qualms about stealing the drip can from the grill nearby and I sure didn't want them swiping the chicks! Even half-closed, the air in the cool side was nearly ambient temperature. I was amazed at how much time they spent in the chilly spring air.

    I also want to point out that there are different types of lights and fixtures available; some better than others. I used a hard glass bulb (surface is textured, more like a flood lamp than a light bulb) in a fixture with a wire cage and ceramic base. Those chicks would have to be bionic to break it! I'd personally prefer a hen do the work but haven't had any volunteers yet.
     
  6. luckydux

    luckydux Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's fantastic to know! My original post may sound as if i wasn't planning on using any heat source but I do intend to. I was assuming that I could but I haven't had a chance to get some min/max thermometers to see what the temps are in the brooder at night so its nice to know that others are doing something similar.
     
  7. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    I can tell you that 100W at 16" above young chicks was plenty for my little flock of 10 down to 35 degrees ambient temp. I also have a 175W bulb that I got in case 100 wasn't enough. I put it in but up higher (24" or so) when they got bigger/busier/flightier.

    I found it difficult to get accurate thermometer readings with infrared heat. Because it heats objects rather than air, the reading would rise and rise depending on how long I left the probe sitting. Watching the chicks' behavior was much more reliable.
     
  8. luckydux

    luckydux Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks everyone for the input. I will have 200w in one and 250w in another but I will be raising quite a few chicks so I'm not sure if I need the extra heat from the bulbs. Time will tell I guess but its been below zero several times lately so I'll have to adjust if necessary.
     
  9. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    I don'k know the wattage on my bulbs, they're the huge red heat bulbs if that helps lol. I've used one to brood 18 chicks at a time and everyone was warm enough. They just move around, the ones right under the lamp get warm and move to the outside and everyone shifts in, kinda like a puppy pile.
     

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