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Why use a brooder?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by BradyMSU, Apr 19, 2008.

  1. BradyMSU

    BradyMSU Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 10, 2008
    Marshall, Michigan
    I have my chicks in a brooder since it seems to be the thing to do. However I don't understand why I need one rather than just letting my chicks have the run of the full coop. The brooder is 18 sq. ft. (2 ft. tall) setting on the floor of an 80 sq. ft. coop. The water and heat lamp hangs from the ceiling of the coop and would still be in the same place even with the brooder gone. The brooder just seems to be a containment device keeping the chicks packed into a small area. Since the coop is fully enclosed, there is only a draft when I open and shut the door of the coop or open one of the windows. There are no adult chickens in the coop. Does anyone here find a brooder is unnecessary for your coop?
     
  2. BettyR

    BettyR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 1, 2008
    Texas Gulf Coast
    As someone in a earlier post said, “it doesn’t matter were they are but how warm they are.”

    As long as they are safe from predators (including snakes), there are no older chickens and you are sure they will be warm enough (97°), there is no reason to have the brooder there.
     
  3. professor-yellow

    professor-yellow Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2008
    draft is the also just as important. I have more concerns with drafts for smaller chicks. it may even seem unnoticable to us, but you will see them huddled all together., as you know coolest air will hang at the lowest point, and on cool evenings even the heat lamp can generate drafts..

    But again if predators, heat, drafts are taken care of and not a concern then should be fine.
     
  4. drillkjh

    drillkjh New Egg

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    Mar 23, 2008
    i had the same set up that you have and i thought the same thing. i levt the cardboard up untill the chicks were big enough to start moving it around. about two weeks. i did have about 2" of wood shaveings on the floor though.
     
  5. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Instead of a brooder you could just run a cardboard draft guard around in a big circle (in your coop), just to keep the chicks from wandering off and getting lost and to protect them against drafts while they are small. Eventually you can remove it or they will start going over it anyhow [​IMG] I have seen where people do that regularly in coop-sized brooder houses and I gather it works fine.

    Pat
     
  6. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    A brooder by definition is nothing more than a heated space where newly hatched fowl are raised.

    I have a huge barn a good distance from my house and it makes no sense to set my chicks up out there to have to run back and forth to check on them several times a day.

    I create a smaller "brooder area" either in a pack 'n play, a big box, a dog crate or a plastic tote to keep the chicks safe and warm in my house.

    If you create a draft free place where you provide a constant source of heat you have created a 'brooder' or a 'brooding area' for your chicks. Where you brood them is up to you. It really isn't something overly specialized.

    Good luck with your chicks.
     

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