Don’t waste money on expensive brooders!

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Katanahamon

Songster
Jun 25, 2021
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I built a brooder complete with hardware cloth windows out of spare cardboard and plain old Elmers glue! Design it, use cans or water jugs as weights, and glue your seams. Cut out picture frames of cardboard to put over the edges of hardware cloth, or chicken wire would suffice for chicks, and use a lot of glue and weights to make cut out windows. Use stuck on upside down Command hooks to secure netting over the top. Presto! As big as you want, inexpensive brooder! I put a waterproof cloth down, spread shavings, added and subtracted pavers or cinder blocks as necessary, it all worked great! My girls are 17 weeks this week..these pics were from April..edit..I cut the walls and folded it up and stored it in the garage. To play with them I had cut a large door and secured it with a couple command hooks and rubber bands on the outside..I’d never put rubber bands on the inside, bad combo! For electrical cords, just cut as small a hole as possible for the plug, place cords underneath your waterproof cloth or shavings..so easy! Probably best to locate cords so they have as little length as possible under shavings to eliminate the possibility of overheating, although, that’s just being overly cautious as the brooder heat plates have extremely low wattage.
another edit..looking back at these photos, please, spend as much time with your babies as you can..they grow up so, so,..SO fast you won’t believe it! Couldn’t resist a baby pic of Black Australorp..!)
 

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Awesome! I built mine, too, but in plywood.
The only thing I regret is that I didn't impregnated it, I just put a waterproof thing on the bottom, but sometimes the water spilled and got under the waterproof:hit .
It is big enough for 15 chicks, enough for this year. The next year I plan to hatch about 30 chicks every time instead of 15, so I'll have to build another one (and impregnate them both :rolleyes:) or I'll reuse some old bins used for carrying fruits and vegetables during the harvesting. I think I'll put the chicks in the basement instead of my bedroom (maybe they will be in my bedroom just the first days to better keep an eye on them), too much dust, this year I had to vacuuming and dusting everyday or more:oops:
 
Awesome! I built mine, too, but in plywood.
The only thing I regret is that I didn't impregnated it, I just put a waterproof thing on the bottom, but sometimes the water spilled and got under the waterproof:hit .
It is big enough for 15 chicks, enough for this year. The next year I plan to hatch about 30 chicks every time instead of 15, so I'll have to build another one (and impregnate them both :rolleyes:) or I'll reuse some old bins used for carrying fruits and vegetables during the harvesting. I think I'll put the chicks in the basement instead of my bedroom (maybe they will be in my bedroom just the first days to better keep an eye on them), too much dust, this year I had to vacuuming and dusting everyday or more:oops:
Yes..this was my first time, I learned a great deal! I bought two large Sweeter Heaters, infrared, that way I could get them all out to the big coop early at five to six weeks when it was darn cold out. I only had to do a complete change of their bedding twice with this setup, although I went through a significant amount of paper towels..I experimented with waterers, my luck with the droppers was not good..they’d get stuck open and soak the shavings, so I went back to open watering devices. I learned to get the feeders and waterers up on cinderblocks to help with them kicking shavings into them.
 
I learned to get the feeders and waterers up on cinderblocks to help with them kicking shavings into them.
I used the same method. Unfortunately sometimes the chicks (when they were almost old enough to fo outside, the culprits were two cockerels jumping and bumpchesting😑) made the waterers to fall from the block, so the waterer spilled all the water on the sharvings, on the wood of the brooder and on the floor (made of wood):barnie
 
We use an extremely large see-through plastic storage container set on a counter height table for our brooder, customized to hold a ceramic heat lamp, side-mounted thermometer, and custom built top cover screen for when the occupants get large enough to start jumping to the 18" side height.

We like the "see-through" quality of this type of box because it allows the chicks to see us moving around all the time, and it doesn't startle them when we approach because they see us coming (they also line up along the edges to watch us when not attending to them). Since they can see us coming, they don't get startled by a large "thing" appearing above them (where their aerial predators come from). Non see-through brooders don't allow that.
 
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