Brooder Question - Wire Floor

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by JohnHenry, Jan 21, 2012.

  1. JohnHenry

    JohnHenry Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 3, 2011
    Somerville
    I'm building a brooder for 10 chicks. It's 8x4x2 and I was planning on using a wire floor but I wondering if the poop actually falls through the wire. I have that real small square pattern wire and its very expensive so would you recommend the wire floor or a plywood floor which is very cheap but will require cleaning.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2012
  2. hemet dennis

    hemet dennis Chillin' With My Peeps

    If you make it so it's easy to clean out go with the plywood. [​IMG]
     
  3. Arielle

    Arielle Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 19, 2011
    Massachusetts, USA
    THe first time I brooded for 25 chicks, I used cardboard boxes, cut and duct taped together. I used shavings for litter and removed the shavings when either it smelled or was damp. If the cardboard worked for me I bet the plywood will work for you. Dust pan and broom very handy.
     
  4. AllenWMiller

    AllenWMiller Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 16, 2012
    Rural PA
    First John I have to ask about your stated dimensions for the brooder of 8 by 4 by 2 is this inches or feet you are talking about?

    Second to answer your question 1/2inch by 1/2inch hardware cloth stretched over the frame is best. The chicks droppings will fall through nicely and you want to keep your chicks away from their droppings.
     
  5. hemet dennis

    hemet dennis Chillin' With My Peeps

    In the winter time the wire floor can make it to cold. [​IMG]
     
  6. JohnHenry

    JohnHenry Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 3, 2011
    Somerville
    Thanks for the replies.

    AllenWMiller the dimensions are in Feet. Gives me 32 sqft for 10 chicks. I plan on raising them in the bathroom in a plastic tube the first week or so and them move them into this brooder in the garage for the next 4-5 weeks.

    hemet dennis I will have 2 hinged lids covering the whole top so cleaning shouldn't be too difficult

    Plywood is $8 and hardware cloth is $40.
     
  7. hemet dennis

    hemet dennis Chillin' With My Peeps

    The cleaning would be easier if you hinge two doors on the front. Just pull out the poop in to a box or can. [​IMG]
     
  8. mtnviewfarms

    mtnviewfarms Chillin' With My Peeps

    We used the wire floor in the brooder box my husband made in which we housed 54 chicks from day old. I was afraid it might hurt their little feet and legs but they all did just fine with it and most of the poop did go right through the wire and onto the newspaper
    that we placed under the brooder and replaced daily. My husband built the brooder on short wooden legs so it didn't seem to get too cold - March through April last Spring. We just had one red brooder bulb going in the middle of the box - two doors on top
    on either end and a glass sliding door in the middle of the top so we could see in and have easy access to add food and change out the waterers. They stayed evenly spread out in the whole box and didn't cluster under the lamp which would have indicated that they were too cold with the floor being wire.
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2012
  9. AllenWMiller

    AllenWMiller Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 16, 2012
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    Okay John so it's in feet. That's a rather large brooder for 10 chicks. The size you indicate is sufficient to handle far more chicks. My concern is the size is determined by numbers of chicks. You don't want a brooder so large that chicks get lost from each other or so big that it cannot be heated properly and easily. To this end, your idea of a plastic tub in the bathroom will work fine. But even after say 4 weeks the size brooder is large for 10 chicks. If you are determining to raise these 10 chicks in this brooder as a rearing house then the size say at 2 months for 10 clucks will be fine.

    As for the $8.00 cost for a 4'x8' sheet of plywood I'm not sure where you are getting that price but that is really cheap but $40 for metal hardware cloth is about right; which is why I don't use metal anymore but instead use Tenax plastic hardware cloth as it is cheaper and far more easy to clean and doesn't rust. (I think you can get it a Lowes or Home Depot in a small roll).

    One caution on the plywood you choose, don't use underlayment plywood as the glues in this particular plywood can be unhealthy for chicks if you are using heat lamps or any heat source for the brooder. Underlayment can off gas for weeks and months even in a newly constructed home. Also make sure whatever plywood you are using is made in the U.S.A. and NOT China as China building materials like plywood are notorious for lead, pcps, mercury etc.

    Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2012
  10. hemet dennis

    hemet dennis Chillin' With My Peeps

    Always better to have bigger then you need and for $8.00 it's the OSB i would guess

    [​IMG]
     

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