i cant wait to get my chickies

chews chooks

In the Brooder
7 Years
Oct 7, 2012
95
4
41
northhampton
im getting 2 chicks on friday and i absolutly cant wait they r 2 girls how big would the brooder need 2 be and ive got a normal 60 watt bulb is this ok the previous owner used this thy are are 1 week old when i get them
 

HEChicken

Crowing
11 Years
Aug 12, 2009
7,552
209
356
BuCo, KS
My Coop
My Coop
For two chicks you can use a large cardboard box or plastic storage container. They will grow fast so the bigger container you use, the better - that way you won't have to change to something bigger as they grow. Initially they might spend most of their time at one end of it but will start to explore as they get older.

A 60-watt might be okay depending on how high over them it is. You want it to provide enough heat to keep them warm. With only two, there won't be much shared body heat and you don't want them getting chilled.
 

chart

Chirping
6 Years
Mar 3, 2013
84
13
86
Chino Valley, AZ.
I actually started mine with a 75 watt and lowered to a 60 later. I've always done it this way, although some will say no. I use large dog crates. One of mine is the plastic, the other wire. Both are about 36"x24". If you have one that big they can go quite a while. The plastic less messy, but the wire lets more light in. Right now I have 5 in each, but they're pretty big, 7 weeks, and ready to go out. They also have a pen that they go out in during the day. I'm on the last leg of my coop. I could even finish it today, but it wouldn't matter because I'm dragging my feet about letting them out of the house. Separation anxiety will kill me! Maybe them, too.

I noticed you resonded to How to raise a chicken as a pet. BEWARE! You can go too far! HAHAHA! It came to my attention a couple days ago that I have another roo. That's 2 out of 10. They're really Mama's boys. To start off, I'll tell you they are all horribly spoiled. My newly 'discovered' roo is a Buff Cochin. Big boy, he is. When I settle them all in at night, my little roo, The Mob Boss, will knock anyone out of the way to be as close to me in his cage as he can get, no matter where I am. The new roo, Hansel (do you suppose I had some kind of intuition when I named them? I have one more with a 'boy' name, but hope it's a she! Sort of), cries the blues (loud!) at their bedtime. Since they are in my office/living room, I can't even hear the TV. I have two choices at that point. Let him cry it out, a long time, or take him out to visit. He's great for the first few minutes; loves to play with my hair and is always trying to peck at my teeth, which are showing because I'm laughing. But then, it's show-time. He wants to run and fly all over, chase the cat (who is, by the way, terrified of him), try to tear up my plants and generally check out everything. He accidentally stood on the remote and turn the TV way up the other night and scrambled across the room to jump back in my lap. I have created monsters and I wouldn't trade them for anything! Enjoy!
 

Stewarts

Songster
6 Years
Feb 26, 2013
268
24
108
PEI, Canada
My husband and I built a large cardboard brooder for ours and we have a brooder lamp. I strongly advise you to get one as the chicks will have to be kept warm. We have 23 chicks that are now a month old; we hatched them ourselves and two turkey chicks that have now graduated to an 8x5 insulated, outdoor chicken coup with two small windows for light. We kept the brooder in the spare room for lack of another place to put them. They need to be kept warm so get a RED Brooder Lamp; you will need it anyway for the chicken coup later. You will find by building a large cardboard brooder that they will have a little time before they start to get too big for the brooder itself. At a month old, ours where trying their wings and between jumping and flitting, they made it to the 2 foot brooder wall where they'd perch. Course my oldest turkey chick whose pretty good a flying, did teach them they could fly...

Stephanie
 

HEChicken

Crowing
11 Years
Aug 12, 2009
7,552
209
356
BuCo, KS
My Coop
My Coop
...get a RED Brooder Lamp; you will need it anyway for the chicken coup later...
Why? I have never provided supplemental heat in my coop and will never do so. Having heat lamps in a coop places you at risk of coop fires (happens multiple times every winter) and the birds don't need the heat. I figure if people keep chickens in Alaska without supplemental heat, there is nowhere where heat would be required.
 

Stewarts

Songster
6 Years
Feb 26, 2013
268
24
108
PEI, Canada
Guess it depends on how old the chicks are when you put them into the coup. Because we had ours in a brooder in the house and at a month old they were getting out and all over the place, we had to put them into their coup. At a month old they are not completely feathered out yet so they need the lamp until they are. Everyone says they should be in a coup at between 6 to 8 weeks. If the lamp is set up properly there should be no fear of fire. Really the only way a fire could happen is if the lamp itself was smashed or if the cord was not safe and I seriously doubt anyone would use and unsafe lamp and cord. We not only check them several times throughout the day but they are the last thing we check on again at night.

At a month old, they are starting to challenge each other and are attempting to fly, rather successfully at times. We found that for whatever reason, a red brooder lamp helps to calm them. Other members have also commented on using a red lamp.
 

HEChicken

Crowing
11 Years
Aug 12, 2009
7,552
209
356
BuCo, KS
My Coop
My Coop
Hmmm....I have not heard of the recommendation to keep them in the brooder 6-8 weeks. In fact, I've heard that chicks kept in a brooder that long end up less hardy than those that are acclimatized sooner. Personally I've never had a chick in a brooder past 4 weeks of age, and that includes some that I hatched in January several years ago. By the time they are 2 weeks old, I'm looking for a nice afternoon to give them some time outside. By 3 weeks they are outside almost all day, and sometime between the 3rd & 4th week, I look for a night that is forecast to be mild, and instead of carrying them back to the brooder at the end of the day, I carry them to the coop. From then on, they are outside in the grow-out pen by day, and in the coop at night. I've never lost one to cold, and in fact, have a pretty hardy bunch, all told. Right now I have chicks in a brooder in an unheated 3-season room, where they've been since hatch. We've had days below freezing but their only heat is an EcoGlow. Even when the measurable temperature in the 3-season room is in the 30's, the chicks spend very little time under the EcoGlow - which matches my observations of chicks raised by broody hens. I also have several hens raising chicks right now and despite our wintry weather, they spend an enormous amount of time out from under her, only running under occasionally to get warmed up.

I know that anyone who puts a heat lamp in their coop thinks they have it hooked up securely, yet, as I said earlier, coop fires happen every year. I heard of several this season alone and some of our fellow BYC'ers lost a lot of birds in those fires.

Another consideration regarding providing heat in the coop is that if they become dependant on the heat, and then you have a power outage, you are more likely to lose birds to cold, than if they hadn't had the heat on in the first place, and had been allowed to acclimatize and learn how to keep themselves warm.
 

Stewarts

Songster
6 Years
Feb 26, 2013
268
24
108
PEI, Canada
Something to consider. I will talk this over with my hubby. Thanks. All I have read on this site is how they should not be put out until fully feathered.
 

chews chooks

In the Brooder
7 Years
Oct 7, 2012
95
4
41
northhampton
i do have a 60 watt bulb will discuss that with others i do have a plastic storage container but its only a realy small one but i have a dog crate with plastic in the bottom but the rest is wire to put them in later so thats good ah yes the 60 watt is inside the box. and another question about brightness the bulb is extreamly bright will this affect my chickies it nearly made me blind last timei turned it on
 

HEChicken

Crowing
11 Years
Aug 12, 2009
7,552
209
356
BuCo, KS
My Coop
My Coop
i do have a 60 watt bulb will discuss that with others i do have a plastic storage container but its only a realy small one but i have a dog crate with plastic in the bottom but the rest is wire to put them in later so thats good ah yes the 60 watt is inside the box. and another question about brightness the bulb is extreamly bright will this affect my chickies it nearly made me blind last timei turned it on
Personally I prefer the red bulbs as they cast a softer light and encourage them to settle down at night and sleep more than the white lights. You can get them at a hardware store. However often they are a higher wattage than is appropriate for a small space, so when I use heat lamps, I plug them into a lamp dimmer (also available at the hardware store, or you can make one quite cheaply) and that way I can "dial down" the heat. This is especially useful as they get older and need less heat - I just dial it down a little every few days.
 

MANNA-PRO

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