Mama Heating Pad in the Brooder (Picture Heavy) - UPDATE

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Blooie, Mar 4, 2015.

  1. Mims

    Mims Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Success with the little Wyandotte!! They were instant friends!! Amazingly the 1 week old chick is the same size as the 1 month + Silkie!

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    Last edited: Jul 6, 2015
  2. Celtics33

    Celtics33 Out Of The Brooder

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    I thought I had better post some updated pics of my MHP brooded chicks. Most are now 8 weeks old with a few that are 6 weeks old. I've just gotten them integrated because I've just now got their coop completed whewwwww what a lot of work, but I'm sure it's going to be worth it. [​IMG]Most are just beginning to check out the roost.
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    One of my speckled Sussex hens enjoying blueberries. Now here are my 4 week old SLW I ordered from Murray McMurray hatchery. They are much smaller than my others and are major drama queens, (I think it must be because the hatchery didn't use MHP) . They ran from the oatmeal I tried to feed them. The hatchery said they were 6 weeks old, but I don't think they could be they are so much smaller. Hopefully, I will get them integrated soon. First, they have to grow.[​IMG]
     
  3. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

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    Mama Heating Pad does seem to make a difference in the growth rate but I've hesitated to say that before. Don't want to be accused of hyping any "miracles" but that's what I've noticed in my Littles and Tinys. Could just be the overall package, too, of being raised outside and having less of the interference that traditional brooding necessitates. I dunno. And I might be totally wrong all the way around. Ken teases me and says they only seemed to grow faster because I wasn't hovering over the brooder watching them all the time! But I DO know for sure that integration goes much easier and faster when they are brooded outdoors, sharing the space with the adult chickens.

    Thanks for sharing the pictures - looks like you have done quite a job on your coop!!
     
  4. bruceha2000

    bruceha2000 True BYC Addict Premium Member

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    That is true Blooie! My first chicks 3 years ago were raised in the house under a heat lamp in a bathroom. Saw them ALL the time. This batch had MHPB for 2 days and have been out in the coop with foster Mama and foster Aunt since they were 3 days old. I see them 2 maybe 3 times a day and they do change a lot "faster" when you don't see them ALL the time.

    My 4 week old broody raised chicks from Meyer have been checking out the roosts for a couple of weeks. Yep, at 2 weeks, they could fly from the ground to the 2' roost and from there to the 4' roost. Last week I started seeing one of them visiting their "aunt" (a Faverolles) up on the 4' roost before heading to bed with their "Mama" (Black Australorp) in the nest box where SHE moved them from the brooding pen 2 weeks ago. Last night FIVE of the 7 littles were up on the 4' roost with "Tante Clemence" for the night!

    You can usually approximate age based on feather development. I agree with you on the SLWs. Seems they would have more tail if they were 6 weeks old. But I've never had any Wynadottes so who knows, maybe they are a slower maturing bird.
     
  5. dpenning

    dpenning Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    Just got some new chicks and am wondering if I need a MHP. I'm in North Texas and it is mid 80 to day but tomorrow going forward it is going to be mid to upper 90's with lows in the upper 70's. The chicks are all running around in the baby pool without a care in the world, eating, drinking and pecking at the geo gel. Do you think mid 70's overnight will need to be supplemented or will a chick pile with 9 chicks be ok?
     
  6. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I'd have some heat available at one end of the brooder, in case they need it....but they need to be able to get away from it if they get too warm.
     
  7. Blooie

    Blooie Team Spina Bifida Premium Member

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    Agreed. Some warmth during the first few nights would be most welcome to them. They also like to have a place to scurry under if they get spooked. Um, <tapping toes> where the pictures of those little babies?
     
  8. dpenning

    dpenning Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    LOL! I'll get some up. I am supposed to be working today and have already taken a trip to the post office and gotten the girls settled in the brooder, then came in and read their instructions to keep them off the bedding so went back out and put them in the baby pool but going back and looking through the thread it looks like lots of peeps put them straight on shavings. I will have to if I'm going to fit MHP in there.
     
  9. txangel55

    txangel55 Out Of The Brooder

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    Hey everybody! I have chicks that are 1&2 weeks old. Some of them, mostly the older ones, are going to sleep on top of MHP. I've been going out and putting them underneath and they stay but I'm wondering if it's really necessary. They are out in the coop and it's really hot during the day (up to 100-105) even with fan and dropping to 65-70 at night. This is my first time with chicks and they seem to be thriving so I'm probably worrying for nothing. :)
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Says 'Lamp'..... but applies to whatever heat source you use:

    Here's my notes on chick heat, hope something in there might help:
    They need to be pretty warm(~85-90F on the brooder floor right under the lamp and 10-20 degrees cooler at the other end of brooder) for the first day or two, especially if they have been shipped, until they get to eating, drinking and moving around well. But after that it's best to keep them as cool as possible for optimal feather growth and quicker integration to outside temps. A lot of chick illnesses are attributed to too warm of a brooder. I do think it's a good idea to use a thermometer on the floor of the brooder to check the temps, especially when new at brooding, later i still use it but more out of curiosity than need.

    The best indicator of heat levels is to watch their behavior:
    If they are huddled/piled up right under the lamp and cheeping very loudly, they are too cold.
    If they are spread out on the absolute edges of the brooder as far from the lamp as possible, panting and/or cheeping very loudly, they are too hot.
    If they sleep around the edge of the lamp calmly just next to each other and spend time running all around the brooder they are juuuust right!

    The lamp is best at one end of the brooder with food/water at the other cooler end of the brooder, so they can get away from the heat or be under it as needed. Wattage of 'heat' bulb depends on size of brooder and ambient temperature of room brooder is in. Regular incandescent bulbs can be used, you might not need a 'heat bulb'. You can get red colored incandescent bulbs at a reptile supply source. A dimmer extension cord is an excellent way to adjust the output of the bulb to change the heat without changing the height of the lamp.


    Or you could go with a heat plate, commercially made or DIY: https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/pseudo-brooder-heater-plate
     

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