Do I need to cover my brooder?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by cwyrick1022, Mar 12, 2017.

  1. cwyrick1022

    cwyrick1022 Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 27, 2017
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    I repurposed an old baby play yard into a brooder. It's about 3ftx3ft and 2 1/2 feet tall. I made a insertable cardboard liner that lines the bottom and sides, it has plastic lining the bottom for waterproofing in case the water spills or leaks (it also makes for easy cleanup) I recently put in some sticks for perching and some bird mirrors and toys to help with boredom. My heat lamp is hung securely from a hook off the ceiling and is exactly 24" from the bottom of the brooder and it's set to one side of the brooder that way the chicks can get closer or further depending on their mood. Right now it's set at the perfect temp with enough space to play, my chicks LOVE their new an improved brooder. (They were in an old plastic tub until they got too big)

    My question is......

    The sides of my brooder are 2 1/2 feet tall, should I worry about them flying out?

    Or is it tall enough I don't have to worry?

    I recently saw my bantam sultan trying to fly off her perch but she didn't get that high. (The perch is only a few inches off the bottom of the brooder.
     
  2. Ol Grey Mare

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

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    Yes - I would cover the brooder -- even with sides that high they can/will soon be going up and over.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. cwyrick1022

    cwyrick1022 Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 27, 2017
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    What's a good cover?
     
  4. BIggoMamma

    BIggoMamma Out Of The Brooder

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    Yes they are going to fly out. Put some chicken wire on the top. Cut it to fit. Or some fish netting, something like that. IDK where you keep this brooder but I promise you there is a rat, wiesel, fox. hawk or other predator licking his chops right now, and it is a matter of time before it gets your chickens unless they are covered. When I was a kid we just stuck them out there and all was well. There are more predator type animals living around people now, they are in subdivisions cities and everything else. If nothing else a cat will get them. COVER YOUR CHICKENS.
     
  5. Ol Grey Mare

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

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    You can construct a simple cover by making a basic frame that will fit on top of, or just over the edges of the top of, the brooder and then attaching poultry netting, hardware cloth (better than netting if there are any animals such as cats that may want to perch on top), plastic netting, etc.
     
  6. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    agree. You need a cover that allows air flow and also keeps out house pets. Chicks also try their wings, if they fly out they can be injured, or unable to get back inside..
     
  7. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    I use hardware cloth, folded on the sides, and stiff enough to stay on top of my brooder stock tank. With a couple of boards resting on the edges, it keeps cats and rodents out, and chicks in. Mary
     
  8. PapaBear4

    PapaBear4 Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 25, 2014
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    Yes, cover it. While full-grown chickens are too heavy to fly, fast-feathering chicks do a pretty good job at it. From your description it sounds like your brooder is inside and you don't have any predator/pet concerns. If that is indeed the case light bird netting would probably do the trick. Whatever you end up using, make sure you set it up in such a way that you don't have to take the entire thing off to access feed and water. If you do they may scatter and jump the far wall when you go to freshen things up for them. They're quick!

    http://www.nocluckingaround.com/2017/02/17/diy-brooder-design-requirements/
     

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