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Brooder Questions

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ShadowsFIAL, Jan 10, 2014.

  1. ShadowsFIAL

    ShadowsFIAL Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 29, 2009
    Fort Worth, Tx
    I am thinking about making a 5'x7' brooder. It will be inside the chicken coop I am planning to build that is 20'x20' with four separate pens inside. Two that are 9'x10' and two that are 6'x10'. The 5'x7' brooder will be on the back wall across from the door between one of the medium and large pens. How many heat lamps should I set inside? One in each corner and leave the middle open? Just looking for ideas. I am planning on this brooder holding up to 35 chicks. 1square foot per bird as they grow. Then they would get separated into their pens or sold. I would imagine that I should get 4 feeders and 4 waters as well.

    Also as the coops go, the 6'x10' I plan to have up to 20 birds in with a 10'x20' run, and the 9'x10' I plan to have up to 30 birds in with a 10'x30' run, does this sound fair? Then again one of the 6'x10's will have quail antwerp bantams ha!
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2014
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    5 x 7 is pretty big. Do you have a net on a pole so you can catch a chick if you need to? Or is it a walk-in?

    My thoughts on that brooder for35 chicks would be to put two lights on one end and let the rest cool off as it will. Where you are it’s probably not going to be very cold when you are brooding chicks anyway, but a broody does not heat up the entire universe for her chicks. She provides a warm spot for them to go to when they need to warm up.

    If you keep one area of that brooder warm enough and let the rest cool off, you don’t have to worry about keeping the entire brooder a perfect temperature. Outside like that, you won’t be able to any way. Let the chicks do the work for you. They’ll find their own comfort zone. Many people would be surprised at how much they play in the cooler portions.

    I can’t remember how much space each chick needs, that will depend some on age and size, but the recommendation is that the chicks have enough room to all eat at the same time. I don’t know why. I don’t do that and don’t have any problems, but I keep feed available all the time. I suspect that recommendation comes from the commercial operations. The normally use a timed feeding approach. They wait until the birds are hungry and then feed them a measured amount. They are all busy eating at the same time so the bullies don’t keep the milder ones away. Then when they are hungry again, they feed them another measured amount. That way they all get the same amount of food. Anyway, it won’t hurt to have enough room for them to all eat at the same time. Water space is not as important since you will have it available all the time.

    You can follow the link in my signature for my thoughts on space requirements. You are tighter than I’d be comfortable with but whether that works for you will depend on how you manage them.
     
  3. ShadowsFIAL

    ShadowsFIAL Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Fort Worth, Tx
    Thanks much! I plan for it to be walk in, I like to sit down with my chicks and spend time with them. I will plan to have two red heat lights in there then, and then of course the overhead lights in the coop just to keep everything lit for them during the day. =) I honestly probably will only be keeping the baby chicks in there up to 4-6 weeks and then they will be integrated into their own flocks or sold etc.
     

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