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Does this sound like a safe and effective brooder/lamp combo?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by banananutmuffin, Apr 6, 2011.

  1. banananutmuffin

    banananutmuffin In the Brooder

    I will be getting 4 standard chicks. I will be keeping them indoors in my mudroom, which averages temp about 60-65 degrees right now (chicks are coming next week).

    I am super super super paranoid about fire (I have SIX smoke detectors on the 2nd floor of my house, where there's only 3 small bedrooms and 2 bathrooms), so lamp setup/safety is really important to me if I want to be able to sleep at night.

    I wanted to use this as a brooder: http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2753290

    thought I'd use this as a lamp: http://www.petsmart.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2753959

    use a red reptile bulb of either 40, 60 or 100 watts, depending on the temp in the brooder, etc.

    I know "clamp" lamps aren't very secure. I plan to lay the lamp on the top of the cage, with the light aimed down toward the chicks (the way everyone seems to do it lol). The clamp won't be to hold the lamp in position, but I will use it for a little extra security to make sure the lamp doesn't roll off or get bumped off or anything.

    Since it looks like the wire on the rabbit cage is painted, what do you think the odds are that a 100 watt bulb will cause it to smoke/fire? Overall, does this sound like a safe and happy set-up for both my house and the chicks?


  2. they'reHISchickens

    they'reHISchickens Songster

    Oct 31, 2008
    Is there a hook in the mudroom ceiling to hang the light from a rope? That way is more secure and you can raise and lower as needed for temp control.
    The cage will be fine as long as there are no drafts coming over the chicks. Sides would keep in more heat.
  3. Nicole01

    Nicole01 Crowing

    Mar 28, 2011
    I just moved my girls out of their first brooder into a xlarge dog crate. I had the exact same cage as you and my girls made it a week and 2 days before they grew out of it. I used mine prior for guinea pigs. I did set a 150 bulb on top. I covered the sides of the cage for the drafts.
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2011
  4. briteday

    briteday Songster

    Dec 16, 2008
    Northern NV
    I have exactly the same rabbit cage as my brooder. I would not lay the hot bulb directly against the wire cage. I had my husband install a screw-in hook in the ceiling above where I keep the brooder to hang the lamp from. We us a chain to hang the lamp and also use a second chain to attach the lamp to nearby cabinet handle. So even if the chain failed or it somehow knocked loose, the second chain would keep the lamp from coming in contact with the brooder. I have also used those clamp style lamps and clamped it to the wire cage, not touching the wire cage, and used a chain attached to the overhead hook as a second precaution.
  5. banananutmuffin

    banananutmuffin In the Brooder

    Hmmmm... so do you think my chicks will outgrow this brooder before they reach 5 weeks old or so? Because if so, I'm not even going to waste my time on it, and I'll just start with something bigger from the get-go.
  6. Black Cochin Bantams

    Black Cochin Bantams Songster

    Feb 24, 2010
    we are currently using a 176 quart sterite container for the few chicks I have hatched so far this year. It is tall (draft free), easy to clean, and can be used for something else later. I did use a clamp lamp with a 60 watt standard bulb. Has worked for my 4 since they hatched. Put several sheet of newpaper down and then it is easy fold up and remove most of the mess quickly and easily. They didn't like me vacumming up the residue much but it does get it clean fast. I have found that not all clamp lamps are equal- I they want to slip or slide down I put a stick through the clamps so it can not fall. I have considered a heating pad underneath but decided that will be a test in the future.
  7. mcjessen

    mcjessen Songster

    Mar 22, 2011
    Coeur d Alene ID
    Yes, they will definitely outgrow that cage/brooder quickly. I had my three girls (13 days old) in a standard Rubbermaid tote and moved them to a larger brooder yesterday because they kept trying to jump/fly out. Honestly, I would start large. We found a Rubbermaid kids toy bin, measuring 4' x 2' x 2.5' at Goodwill. I was going to use it as a large planter but it's perfect for the girls. It's deep enough that they can't jump/fly out.

    As far as the light goes, I wouldn't trust the clip lamps. Try to hang a lamp from the ceiling. It's a lot safer and easier to adjust.

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