Incubator ok, 3 weeks to build a brooder. Your mission, should you decide to accept it......as alway

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by ChicksAre4Kids, Feb 9, 2017.

  1. ChicksAre4Kids

    ChicksAre4Kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 19, 2015
    I think I finally have the bugs fixed in my homemade incubator to start my 12 collonca eggs. I now figure I have 3 weeks or so to build a brooder. Working with what I have on hand, my idea is to turn a portable wire kennel I use for keeping chickens separated when necessary anyway into a brooder. (pic is from internet, but we have 3 or more similar)[​IMG]

    With weather concerns, it'll be indoors for the first month or so, then out to the collonca coop to allow them time to get to know each other from opposite sides of the cage, then open to join the flock.

    Any ideas you chicken geniuses out there have that might help me will be repaid with my eternal graditude.

    CK
     
  2. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    That is what I used when I used to brood indoors. I got cardboard and made a guard all around about 6 or 8" high. I started with paper towels over newspaper then after a couple days used the shavings. At the time I was also using a heat lamp. With it being an XL crate the lamp was too high if I set it on top (using a red reptile heat bulb so I hung it inside with a short curtain rod going through the clamps and resting on the top of the crate so it couldn't possibly fall (I hope that makes sense). Now I use heating pads, and 90% of the time I brood outdoors. In this pic I had two lamps. One was regular white light for during the day and at night it switched to the red light. I had them on timers and matched it to the outdoors. This was on my enclosed porch so they were getting regular sunlight as well so right away they had a regular day/night cycle.

    [​IMG]

    You might not be able to tell, but the waterer is on a 12"x12" piece of scrap wood, which I highly recommend to minimize the amount of shavings that get into it. At this point you can see I was using the shavings and had puppy pads underneath them.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2017
  3. ChicksAre4Kids

    ChicksAre4Kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That looks fine. Thank you for your input! How many watts and type was/is your bulb? I have a 275w UV sunlamp and a 200w heatlamp. ....or I can get whatever is best if neither is good. I'd like to use as low a wattage as possible to achieve the proper temps.


    CK Scrooge
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2017
  4. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    I bought the reptile bulbs from Walmart. I think they are 75W. They are only $5 and I think its really all I could find at the time. By about four weeks I had the lamps sitting on top of the cage, if I remember correctly.

    I know that people will tell you again and again about 95 degrees to start and lower it 5 degrees per week or whatever, but I and some others are of the preference to err on the cooler side. For one thing, being too hot is more likely to cause health issues. Secondly they feather out and transition to outdoor temps faster. Even now I have some chicks that are 2 1/2 weeks old brooding outdoors, and they do have a broody mama to lay under at night but when I check on them most of the time they are not under her even when its in the 30's.
     
  5. ChicksAre4Kids

    ChicksAre4Kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm glad you mentioned the daily sunshine too. I have the perfect spot in mind now to keep them in sunshine and fabricated shade. I'm grateful for the lower wattage info. I had a raised screen floor in mind, so I could clean easily....how about a 40w in a tin can under there to zone heat a corner of the cage? Even that may be too warm?

    CK
     
  6. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    I was recently reading about something called an Ohio Brooder and that reminds me of them, though I think it would be hard to do in a crate.

    Honestly, I am 100% a fan of the heating pad. This thread is sooooo long but take a look at the pictures at least to get an idea of how people set theirs up. My heating pads only cost about $13 and they are easy to wash the cover and wipe clean.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/956958/mama-heating-pad-in-the-brooder-picture-heavy-update

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/brooding-with-mama-heating-pad
     
  7. ChicksAre4Kids

    ChicksAre4Kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thing is, I already have a tincan heater I made for another critter we had way back when. I like the idea of recycling it for this. I should fire that up too and test the heat output from the top of it.

    CK
     
  8. SunHwaKwon

    SunHwaKwon Overrun With Chickens

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    If it directs heat out the top, that's not very useful, as you either need heat directed down toward the ground for the chicks to huddle under, or through conduction such as with the heating pad or a heat plate. Perhaps I am not understanding how to put a tin can heater to use in this application. It sounds like an inadequate heat source at best or a huge fire risk at worst.
     
  9. ChicksAre4Kids

    ChicksAre4Kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'll do some temperature testing on different sized bulbs. It's sealed in steel and perfectly safe, even the cord I used, so that is not a concern to me. Just the heat rising from the top. If I remember right it was about 120 with the bulb we used. Through a thick wire screen to hay or litter above, it should make a cozy warm corner for them if they choose to use it. I just don't want it too warm.
     
  10. ChicksAre4Kids

    ChicksAre4Kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, you convinced me. Heating pad it is. That saves me time and effort too. Thanks!
    *now.....where the heck did she put those darn heating pads.....?*

    CK
     

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