Greenfire Farms' Brooder Design

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by stoneunhenged, Jan 7, 2011.

  1. stoneunhenged

    stoneunhenged Chillin' With My Peeps

    443
    83
    161
    Aug 21, 2008
    USA
    Greenfire Farms is a very small farm that raises ultra-rare breeds of chickens. Some folks have asked how we brood our chicks. We have an innovative system of 24 cages placed over fiberglass trays. The manure falls into the trays and they're hosed clean once a day. The manure is pumped through underground pipes and eventually goes into a raised tank where it is aerated and converted to manure tea. The tea is then sprayed on our pasture. The cages are vinyl coated wire with low pressure automatic waterers, external feed hoppers, and infrared ceramic heaters overhead that provide warmth for young chicks. Each of the 24 cages is 2' x 3' x 18" high. With experience we've made a few adjustments to the system, but it is a fairly easy way to clean up after several hundred chicks and convert a problem (manure) into a valuable asset (fertilizer).

    Here's are a few pics:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    35,112
    121
    458
    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    Fancy Smancy.. [​IMG]
     
  3. EweSheep

    EweSheep Flock Mistress

    21,917
    69
    418
    Jan 12, 2007
    Land of Lincoln
    Love it!!! Fantastic set up!

    The dropping trays, are they to be washed off or does it pull out for you to sweep out the droppings into a bucket?
     
  4. stoneunhenged

    stoneunhenged Chillin' With My Peeps

    443
    83
    161
    Aug 21, 2008
    USA
    Quote:You hose them down and the manure slurry flows into an underground pipe and is pumped to a holding tank about 200' from the brooder shed.
     
  5. EweSheep

    EweSheep Flock Mistress

    21,917
    69
    418
    Jan 12, 2007
    Land of Lincoln
    Pretty much like a hog barn! Terrific!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  6. CARS

    CARS Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've thought about using that system years ago when I received a Bass (rabbit supply) catalog but I just don't have enough chicks or small animals to justify the cost.
    It's a great idea!
     
  7. stoneunhenged

    stoneunhenged Chillin' With My Peeps

    443
    83
    161
    Aug 21, 2008
    USA
    I bought the basic cage and tray set-up from Bass (they were good to deal with) and then modified it for chicks. The roof wire on the top rack of cages is galvanized, not vinyl coated, so the overhead infrared emitters will not melt the plastic. The other cage sides are all vinyl coated. I fabricated sheet metal end caps to stop overspray while cleaning. There is sheet metal flashing at the base of the cage rack to prevent feed from falling underneath the cage battery.
     
  8. moonlyghtegirl

    moonlyghtegirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    368
    0
    129
    Feb 16, 2009
    [​IMG]

    Thanks for your generosity in sharing your expertise and methods! I always appreciate reading your posts! Lots of helpful info, and I always learn something!

    April
     
  9. phasianidae

    phasianidae Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,941
    12
    163
    Nov 9, 2010
    Very cool design. What are the dimensions of the wire on the floor or the cages?

    Thanks,

    Ryan
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by