need advise on a "transition brooder"

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Stormy, Aug 1, 2008.

  1. Stormy

    Stormy Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 7, 2008
    South Carolina
    I currently have my 10 day old chicks (27 of them) in this brooder box. As you can see, they may last another week in this but will need something bigger.
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    They are not yet ready to roam in the coop because of the lack of full feathers. I understand that will be at about 5-6 weeks of age.

    So I need a bigger brooder box to last until then. So I bought this $10 pool and brought it home. The plans are to put hardware cloth over the top of it.
    [​IMG]


    The concern with this, is that the sides of this pool are even shorter than the current breeder box and these little girls are jumping and flying in short spurts! Yet they are growing so fast, I don't think I can keep them in this brooder for any more than another week without them becoming too crowded:

    So how can I increase the height of the pool walls? Ideas?
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2008
  2. Reinbeau

    Reinbeau The Teapot Underground Premium Member

    Do you have a Circuit City, Best Buy or something of the like near you? Try to get a big screen TV box. That's what I used. The sides were four feet high. What I did was remove the tape on the top and bottom, cut the bottom flaps at 8" intervals, and bend the box into a round shape. I taped the flap pieces together on the bottom. Turned the box over, lined it with a cut-up vinyl shower curtain (two layers) with another layer below the box. Added the bedding, put two strips of wood through holes in the sides for roosts (they like to play on them when they're young, but they didn't sleep on them while in the brooder, they all piled against each other along one wall). Then I cut one side down half way to make a flap so I could reach in there to do whatever needed to be done. It worked well until they were six weeks old, by then the coop was ready and it was warm enough out there. At that point they occasionally would fly up to the top of the box when I came into the room, but they didn't do much roaming - well, unless they landed on the flap, it would fall down to the outside and they'd have a little look-see before they went back into the brooder. Cute!

    Anyways, I hope this gives you an idea. You could take the same box and make it round to put into the pool. That could be your bottom (thinking as I'm typing, sorry!). Might be worth a shot.
     
  3. spoonie

    spoonie Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 16, 2008
    Juda, WI
    You could line the pool with a taller cardboard, then put the hardware cloth over it. We used cardboard boxes we could flip the flaps up on when the chicks started to be able to fly up higher.
     
  4. ericbrbr

    ericbrbr Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 28, 2008
    Tennessee
    I think you are looking for something quick. This is just an example. I dont know if you or anyone around you is handy with tools but its hard to beat plywood. My brooder boxes are probably bigger than you want they are 6 feet long by 2 feet wide and 2 feet deep. I ripped 4 pieces of 3/4 inch advantech down to 24 inches and cut the 2 sides 6 feet long and cut 2 ends 2 feet long. I recommend the 3/4 inch because you can screw it together without having to frame it up. I used 4 2X2 spindles for the legs to get it off the floor. Now for the bottom I picture framed a box from 1X3's and put rabbit wire on it. I find this keeps them much dryer than a slick bottom brooder. I also have another sheet of 3/4 inch used for a drawer directly under the wire. This catches the droppings. I keep newspaper on it and slide it out to clean. Works very well. As for the electrical I have 2 bulbs and one water heater thermostat. I also have a divider in mine so I can keep some seperated if needed. Make sure the divider has the wire as well so it recieves the same amount of heat. If laid out right one sheet of plywood will give you a 4 foot by 2 foot box 2 foot tall this would probably be more what your looking for.

    Advantech $20
    Water Heater Thermostat $8
    Keyless Sockets 2 @ $2
    2X2's 2 @ $3

    Plus screws and Rabbit wire well under $50 total
     
  5. AllChookUp

    AllChookUp Will Shut Up for Chocolate

    May 7, 2008
    Frozen Lake, MN
    Stormy - Your pool looks like the "K-Mart-special" I just bought today as a wading pool for my little granddaughter. When I put in in my truck leaving the store, I wondered if it would work as a brooder.

    I agree with others that extra cardboard walls would be needed to keep the chickies in.
     
  6. bluie

    bluie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2007
    Mine are twelve days old and as of yesterday, are spending their days in the coop. I will have them in there at nights too very soon, probably this weekend. I plan to just put the brooder light right in the coop and continue to monitor the temp just like I have been doing in the house. I blocked off half the coop space temporarily (just to make catching them easier), but they have a lot more room and they are going crazy flying! This morning our SLW got two feet off the ground! BTW, the coop is very secure.
     
  7. Stormy

    Stormy Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 7, 2008
    South Carolina
    Bluie,

    I had also thought about putting them out in the coop. But temps here in Illinois are hitting the low 90's this next week. So inside the coop will be way hotter than that. (we do have two windows open for cross breeze, covered with hardware cloth).

    So wouldn't it be too hot in the coop for them, since they don't yet have all their feathers?
     
  8. bluie

    bluie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 18, 2007
    Hi Stormy. Good question! I forgot about that. Our coop is in dappled shade or complete shade most of the day. Maybe a fan? I hope someone with more experience will chime in! Maybe put a thermometer in there to see just how hot it gets.
     

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