Chick Brooder Box Advice!

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by MrsHannahEller, Feb 15, 2017.

  1. MrsHannahEller

    MrsHannahEller New Egg

    Jan 29, 2017
    Hello all!

    My husband and I randomly decided two months ago that we really wanted to raise some chicks and enjoy farm fresh eggs.

    Since then I have bought a few books and spent a lot of time on pintrest trying to decide the best way to go about my coop. Well, I have decided on my coop and run specs, but.. I haven't thought about the brooder box at all..

    At first I really wanted to build a box from scratch. But now I was thinking about maybe using a rabbit cage as my brooder box? I have a one year old and a six year old, and also a 40 lb dog and a cat. So keeping them safe from all sorts of things is very important. An open top brooder box is out of the question. I did see some very cool options on tractor supply, but none that seem easy to keep secure. I don't really want to go the plastic storage tote.. cause I use them so much to store stuff and just cannot bare the idea of cutting one up. I just really don't want to DIY it honestly.

    Has anyone ever used the wire top, plastic bottom rabbit cages as a brooder box before?
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe True BYC Addict

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    I use two methods.
    The best is to raise them in the coop if you have a means of running electric to it.
    Thinking about how a mother hen raises chicks, they provide a warm spot and lots of cool space. That's the way we should do it. They need a warm spot but don't need the entire space to be 90F. They need to be able to find their comfort zone and after a couple weeks they need cooler space.
    This is my coop setup for chicks.

    You can research Ohio Brooder for specs on this and it works when coop temps go down into the 20s F.




    If the ambient temperature isn't too cold, you can just put a heat lamp or two in and they'll be fine.

    If the outside temps are too cold, I use large moving boxes from Lowe's. They're under $2 each and you can cut doorways between them to make the brooder as big as you need.
    1 person likes this.
  3. Another great brooder option is a puppy playpen with rolled cardboard around the insides.....Make a wire top and you will have a nice sized brooder...I currently have a Hen raising chicks inside the same set up....keeps drafts off the chicks.....

  4. Yorkshire Coop

    Yorkshire Coop Moderator Staff Member

    Aug 16, 2014
    Yorkshire, UK
    My Coop
    Hi :welcome @MrsHannahEller

    I do use a guinea cage with heat plate for brooding but only for the first few days or week depending how many chicks I have. It really is not large enough though to brood in for any longer.


    Once I know everyone is strong enough and are eating and drinking well they get moved out to the shed. Depending on weather conditions they go out with just heat plate or if it's very chilly I will put the lamp on for them. The shed has so much more room and as I they grow they can come out into the run around the shed.

    Last edited: Feb 15, 2017

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