Chick math, how big should brooder be?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Peeperscreepers, Apr 7, 2018.

  1. Peeperscreepers

    Peeperscreepers Songster

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    Ive read a lot on here about chicken math and l have planned my coop accordingly but I can't find much on chick math and how much space each chick should have? My 12 chicks are growing fast and I've had them only 2 weeks. When I look in the brooder it seems they have plenty of space for mock battles and chicken activities but I wouldent want to have nasty habits, picking(really worries me) or others started due to my ignorance so it's better I ask instead of just worry. Lol. I l realize I will have to move them eventually but I need some details on chick math? Also I just wanted to say how grateful I am for the collective wealth of knowledge this site provides and everybody on here that shares their experience and knowledge. I have learned so much already. THanks!l
     
  2. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Sr Chicken Wrangler

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    If you are prepared for Chicken math you will build this...

    chicken coop.jpg

    And then be ready to built 10 more like it....Chickens tend to get out of hand.


    What you really build will depend on how many you keep. What the total number you want is and how much room you have.

    I have a 40x80 pole barn (Chicken coop)... I have a 16x24 chicken coop.....A 16x10 chicken coop. A 8x16 chicken coop and several chicken huts in 8 enclosed covered runs....

    My wife is being unreasonable about building another.
     
    rossi.chicks, KayTee, SavKel and 4 others like this.
  3. Maybe put them in the coop?

    Gary
     
  4. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Sr Chicken Wrangler

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    Show us a picture of your coop, or give us the size would help too...

    If you are not a farm "kid" and this is your first time with chickens, you need to know there will be some activities that shock you. The jockeying for position and such will occur no matter how much room you have. Some birds just seem to be picked on. It is your fate if you are the bottom of the pecking order.

    Now good nutrition and allowing them plenty of run or to free range will help some of that...
     
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  5. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

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    By the time chicks are 2 - 3 weeks old, they should have 2 s.f./bird. If you are brooding them in your house, they should be weaned off heat by 3 weeks. You can spend the 4th week giving them day trips. By the time they are 4 - 5 weeks old, they should be ready to go into a well designed coop without heat. My chicks are brooded outside and wean themselves off heat by the time they are 4 - 5 weeks old with night time temps getting down to freezing.
     
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  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

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    @duluthralphie Down WITH DUX!!! Down WITH DUX!!! Down WITH DUX!!! Down With DUX!

    all dux have down!!!
    dux with down!!! dux with down!!! dux with down!!! dux with down!!! dux with down!!!
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2018
  7. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

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    Heavy breeds can get by on 1/2 sq. ft. per bird for the first week. Yours are beyond that. They'll need 2.5 sq. ft. per bird till 8 weeks.
    More space is always a good thing. The opposite is true of less space = bad thing.
     
    duluthralphie likes this.
  8. SavKel&RynKel

    SavKel&RynKel Free Ranging

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    My Coop
    We originally heard 0.5 square feet for chicks up to 4 weeks, and 2-3 s.f. per bird in the coop. There was some guidelines for the intermediate range, but our nine went straight to the coop at three weeks. Chickens are like everything, the more room the better. We didn't have pecking issues or anything, you could just see they needed more space to roam during the day. So the simple guideline i offer is as much space per bird you can create. In math terms: 0.5 s.f.*weeks of age/bird until they move to the coop.
     
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  9. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Sr Chicken Wrangler

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    I would like to add, you can help some if you are over crowded by giving them roosts and different levels and things to hide behind or in so they have their "alone time"

    When I am pushing the limit for space I always add a bunch of roosts at varying heights for them. it helps. (BUT is not the total answer to too crowded.)
     
    SavKel likes this.
  10. HoopyFrood

    HoopyFrood Songster

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    My Coop
    Our girls were inside more than I would like as the coop and run construction project took far longer than I would have liked. They grow incredibly fast, so I'm glad your asking the question now - you're going to have your hands full very soon! :) We only had five chicks, by the way.

    The first brooder was a plastic tote about 4-5 sq ft. By the second week we added a second identical plastic tote 8-10 sq ft). Probably by the 3 or 4th week we probably added a 16 sq ft (giant cardboard box) in the house so they could have a little more room to play if the weather was bad. Otherwise they were out in their tractor most of the time.

    By week 5 we had them outside in that tractor (about 40 sq ft) pretty much all day long. They outgrew that even, and we upgraded to a tractor of about 80 sq ft at week 8 or so.

    That 80 sq ft tractor had to be moved every 2-3 days to keep them on fresh grass - otherwise they got cagey and aggressive. We kept moving them in that until the run was finished at about 15 weeks of age. That was 210 sq ft. They moved in. A week later we added a 300 sq ft garden. And that's what they have today! Honestly if they could be allowed more space, they'd happily take it. It's hard to imaging "too much" space for chickens :)
     
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