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Brooding Questions

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by kirghizstan, Mar 5, 2015.

  1. kirghizstan

    kirghizstan Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 19, 2014
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    My 9 chicks are 2 weeks old now and I have a few questions.

    1) The height of the 75watt bulb being used is the same as the day I brought them home because they have kept a fairly regular sleeping pattern underneath. Not directly under it but in the general area with a distinct open area directly underneath. I've tried raising it or a 60watt bulb but they all crowd in underneath telling me they are too cold so I change it back. Should I just keep this up until they decide they are ready?

    2) They are in a long plastic tub right now, but they are quickly becoming too big. I'm going to build a 3.5' x 4.5' brooder for them. They will probably be inside until mid to late april because the snow is still 2 feet deep and I'm still experiencing negative temperatures. How high should I make the brooder. I was thinking of making it 2' at one end and 3' at the other so my 1 year old can walk up and see. however if 2' is enough i could make the whole thing that height simplifying construction.

    Your thoughts are appreciated, thanks
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Definitely pay a lot more attention to them than any magic formula you may read on here. My perfect brooder includes having one area warm enough and letting the rest cool down quite a bit. When you have a room full of people with the thermostat set at a “normal” temperature, some people are too warm, some too cold, and some just right. Why? People are different. Chicks are different too. Give them an option if finding where they want to be. As long as they are not crowding under the heat or lining the far walls of the brooder, you are doing it just right.

    I know some people on here think I’m horrible but my 3x6 brooder is in the coop. I’ve had chicks just a few days old in there when the outside temperature was in the single digits Fahrenheit. I keep one end toasty but there have been mornings I’ve seen ice on the far end of that brooder. The chicks don’t care what the temperature is outside the brooder. They don’t care what the temperature is on the far end of the brooder. They care what the temperature is where they are. If some place is too cold, they don’t go there, at least not for long. Then hey go back to the warm end to warm up.

    Two feet is a good height for that brooder.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. kirghizstan

    kirghizstan Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 19, 2014
    Mass, USA
    with very curious young kids, 1 and 4, do you think the chicks would do ok with a heating pad underneath instead of a lamp above? I'm worried the kids could touch the light and get hurt.
     
  4. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    A heating pad is really not a good idea in a brooder situation, imo. I would suggest you consider a brooder plate if you wish to avoid the heat lamp.
     
  5. wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Chillin' With My Peeps

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  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    That photo shows over, not under. I assume you are brooding in the house where the ambient temperature is in the 70’s. At two weeks old yours aren’t that far away from not needing any heat in there.

    As long as you can provide a set-up where there is a transition from heated to ambient, it should work. I’d be a little nervous going immediately from an area that is potentially too warm to an area that is too cold, but they are pretty tough. They could probably work it out.

    With your kids playing in there I’d be a lot more concerned about them knocking the light down and starting a fire than them getting burned. Many decades ago my sister-in-law warned her two year old son to not touch certain things because they were hot. She started warming her curling iron and warned him not to touch it. It was “hot”. He wanted to curl his hair when she turned her back so he burned his forehead. After he quit crying he went to several places around the house, pointing and saying “hot”. He now understood what “hot” meant.

    I don’t advocate burning your kids, but a fire could have much more serious longer lasting consequences than a burn. I’d consider trying to keep the kids from getting burned in the first place which is what you are thinking about. They will learn “hot” soon enough no matter how hard you try.
     
  7. kirghizstan

    kirghizstan Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 19, 2014
    Mass, USA
    Well that brooder was short lived. I built them a new 4.5' x 5.5' x 2' brooder because they seem to have tripled in size in a week. hopefully this is big enough until the snow melts enough to let me finish the coop.
     

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