Newbie - My Brooding Box Solution

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Bucky42, Apr 5, 2018.

  1. Bucky42

    Bucky42 In the Brooder

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    Apr 5, 2018
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    Hi Everyone!

    I have really enjoyed reading this forum over the past several months. I can't believe the wealth of knowledge that exists here - it is truly amazing. I am a new owner of 8 baby chicks. I got 2 amberlinks, 2 blacklinks, and 4 rhode island reds. At this point they are all between 4-5 weeks old.

    As I was preparing for this new endeavor, I read a lot about brooding boxes. I started with the largest rubbermaid-type tube I could find, but after a few weeks I felt like the chicks were really too cramped. So I did some brainstorming and came up with what I think is a pretty good idea. I bought a wardrobe moving box from Home Depot, put it together, laid it on its side, and cut the "side" (now the top) out of it. It is 48" long and 24" wide and 24" high. Even better, the metal clothes bar that comes with it, if properly secured, works perfectly as a mounting bracket for your heat lamps. And the handles on the side also work great as an easy place to slide in a roosting bar.

    Anyway, just thought I would share my idea and introduce myself. Have a great day, everyone!

    IMG_2189.JPG IMG_2243.JPG IMG_2251.JPG IMG_2318.JPG
     
  2. Quik1th

    Quik1th Songster

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    Nice setup!
     
    Ursuline Chick likes this.
  3. SueT

    SueT Free Ranging

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    4-5 weeks old, it's time to wean them off heat and move them to coop. Really!
    BTW, welcome to BYC..
     
    Killer Tomato likes this.
  4. HoopyFrood

    HoopyFrood Songster

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    Thanks for posting! Great to see your setup! Nicely done :) and...
    :welcome

    If you want a video tour of our modular brooder setup PM me and I'll send you a YouTube link. The gist of it was two modular plastic totes with a removable chicken moat. During the day they had twice the brooder space, but at bedtime they get herded into the sleeping brooder and the moat closed off (so the second brooder could be pushed aside for the night). This was in our living room, so space was at a premium.

    We found our girls (only 5) grew up so fast we were doing modifications almost every day! They really kept us on our toes. As Sue mentioned I think we may have not have been heating much, if at all, except at night at the age your chicks are at. I can't remember at what age we stop using the ceramic infrared heater at night, but I'm sure it was in their second month.

    Just listen to and watch the chicks carefully. They'll let you know when they're too hot.

    Also by your age we had ours spending lots of time outdoors (if the weather is nice) in basically a chicken tractor. Towards the end the only time they spent in the brooder was sleeping; the rest of the time was in their tractor outside.

    The only exception was on really bad weather days (we'd get torrential downpours). We happened to have a cardboard box (I can't remember why) that had a footprint of about 4 ft x 4 ft. When we taped the top flaps up it was about 4 ft high. That was barely big enough to keep the five of them in during the day when they were about two months old.

    They were in the coop at 10 weeks. I started building it when they were 4-5 weeks old. Hopefully you've started your coop and run, too? :D

    Adorable girls!! I think those production types can be a little more aggressive than heritage types. Space is your friend for keeping a happy, peaceful flock. You can do yourself a big favor by building everything as big as practical. Good luck and have fun!!
     
    Killer Tomato likes this.
  5. nerfworthy

    nerfworthy Songster

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    They look younger than 4-5 weeks! Are you sure on the age? By that age they should be fully feathered. My chicks are barely 3 weeks and they look the same as yours. :eek:
     
  6. Bucky42

    Bucky42 In the Brooder

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    I have begun doing that just this week. The pics are a few weeks old. I first went down to a single heat lamp. Then I started having them spend some of the warmer hours of the day outside and/or in the coop. Last night was their first night in the coop. It got down into the 30s here so I kept a heat lamp on out there for them. I checked on them a few times and they all seemed to be doing great, and they definitely love being able to spread their wings.
     
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  7. nerfworthy

    nerfworthy Songster

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    Oooh makes sense! You should show us some updated pics I'd love to see the babies in their coop. :celebrate
     
  8. HoopyFrood

    HoopyFrood Songster

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    Just wait until they REALLY start stretching them, especially if they're in the house! Our place is a little over 500 sq ft, so when they were feeling cheeky they'd fly out of the brooder onto the kitchen table or the back of the living room couch to say HELLO!! Tiny chickens EVERYWHERE!
    :lau
     
    Killer Tomato likes this.
  9. Bucky42

    Bucky42 In the Brooder

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    IMG_2212.JPG IMG_2224.JPG IMG_2225.JPG For the coop I turned half of my shed into the coop. I built nesting boxes and some roosting bars as well. Next up is to order an automatic door and figure out the plans for the run. I am going to let them free range but based on what I have read, I should have a fully secured run area as well so when I am not home they will be safe from predators.
     
    Killer Tomato and nerfworthy like this.
  10. Bucky42

    Bucky42 In the Brooder

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    Here they are in the coop today. The picture quality is terrible because of the sun glare. IMG_2336.JPG IMG_2337.JPG IMG_2338.JPG
     

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