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Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Austin T, Feb 15, 2017.
How often do I need to clean my chick brooder of about 75 chicks.
It may depend on the bedding, but if it begins to smell, then clean it. The frequency of cleaning will need to increase as the chicks grow, i.e. poop more
How big is it? How old are they? The smaller the brooder, the more often you will need to tend to it. I like to give my chicks 1 s.f./bird for the first week or so, then, by the time they are 3 weeks old, I want them to have 2 s.f./chick. I do a deep litter management. As long as the litter is staying dry, I simply add more on top. by the time they move into the big girl's coop, their litter might be 6" deep.
Like they said, it depends. Even the kind of chicks can make a difference, broilers will probably require more cleaning than other types of chicks. Broilers are pooping machines.
What you are trying to do is keep the brooder dry. A wet brooder is an unhealthy brooder plus it will stink. If the poop gets thick enough it stops drying out and it stinks. A waterer that leaks or spills can cause moisture. The bedding is there to act like a diaper, absorb moisture to help keep the brooder dry. You can often extend the life of bedding by raking it and spreading the poop out, but if it gets wet it stops absorbing moisture.
I can’t come close to giving you a schedule for when you need to clean it. That’s unique to you and your set-up. As CT said, if it starts to smell, it’s time.
I'm a bit more of a clean freak (more chicks, more cleaning - sometimes a couple times a day) I should buy stock in pine chips! But the advice you've been given is good. Smell is a huge indicator, and since mine are in the laundry room, attached to the kitchen, anything funky smelling must go! (Including my teenager's shoes!!)
When bedding gets wet or it stinks.
No one can give you specific time frame. Too many variables.