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Outdoor brooder!?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Wendyba29, Jan 5, 2009.

  1. Wendyba29

    Wendyba29 In the Brooder

    Has anyone used an outdoor brooder before? My husband doesn't want any more babies in the house, (He's allergic to birds) I managed to do two batches before he said enough!! I'm looking to build something outside but not sure what or how to do it! any help would be great!!
  2. coffeemama

    coffeemama Barista Queen

    Mar 5, 2008
    Well from what I know (which is limited), it is difficult to keep the temp high enough in an outdoor brooder. I have a brooder room built in my coop (small) and the temps under the light are not very high.
  3. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    My chicks arrived in early April. If I remember correctly the temps were in the low to mid 60s during the day and 30s & 40s at night. They spent about 12 days in a shed (uninsulated, but sealed from drafts) that was heated with an oil-filled electric heater and had two heat lamps over their brooder. At two weeks we moved them to the screened porch with a draft guard around their brooder (a kid's pool) and their heat lamps. They did absolutely fine.
    If I ever order chicks again I plan on brooding them the same way. Of course, I won't order winter chicks. In the springtime I think it works just fine to raise them outside, as long as you are able to keep the enclosure to the temp. necessary for their age.
  4. ChanceRider

    ChanceRider Songster

    Aug 19, 2008
    Somerset, CA
    I converted a portion of our 3 sided wood shed (very well built) into a coop for the 30 meaties we received as day old chicks on Dec 11th. I put in a new plywood floor and a plywood front and side wall that are 4' tall. Above the plywood front and interior side wall I have 1/2" x 1" hardware cloth, covered with removable plastic sheeting to prevent drafts.

    Inside the coop I built a raised brooder that's about 48" x 53", with sides 26" tall. Our temps have been between about 30 - 40 at night and it's taken two 250 watt red heat lamps to keep the temp up.

    This was my first attempt at building a brooder... with my layers I only had 9 chicks that I kept in a large dog crate. So far I really like the set up. On nice days I can lift up the plastic sheeting to increase ventilation.... those mutant meaties really can smell a place up [​IMG].
  5. jvls1942

    jvls1942 Crowing 9 Years

    Oct 16, 2008
    I have kept chicks as young as a week old outside under a brooder in minus zero temps.. I have a 2oo chick brooder , and I just piled loose straw over the top and all around the sides.it held 85 degrees
    1 person likes this.
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    go to www.plamondon.com , go to his section on chicken stuff, and look for the article on the insulated electric hover brooder.

    You *do* need somewhere draft-free and totally predatorproof, though. And the more constant the temperature (e.g. in a barn not outdoors) the better.

    Good luck,

    Pat, having used that plywood hover brooder with lightbulbs inside (last spring) in an unheated outbuilding with good success.
  7. Wendyba29

    Wendyba29 In the Brooder

    Thanks for the info, We are planning on getting some chicks this spring, I would have some now if my husband wasn't such a pain!!
  8. Hobbley_Farm

    Hobbley_Farm Songster

    Sep 9, 2008
    Pilot Mountain, NC
    When my hubby built our chicken shack, I knew from the beginning that I wanted a brooder box in there. I have a heat lamp in there and also a space heater. It's one you can get fairly inexpensively at walmart. It has a button on the bottom so that if it's tipped over, it shuts off. And it's also temp controlled. IF it gets to such and such temp in the box, it shuts of. I put sheets of wood on top but left an area so make sure they got fresh air. Course I check on them all the time too! I have had a couple die, but I do not believe it's from the brooder, I think something else was going on with them. This shipment I got from ideal was the scraggliest one I have ever got. I guess it's because of the "off" season. So between the heat lamp and the space heater in the brooder box, and then the heat lamp in the 'general area' of the chicken shack, everyone one has done nicely. [​IMG]

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