Wool Hen: Or, How to raise chicks with NO HEAT LAMP and possibly no supplemental heat at all.

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
27,098
917
CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
This is a great addition to the brooding tool box. It doesn't have to be an either/or approach when considering the MHP or the WH. The wool hen could be adapted to be a follow up for the MHP. In my zone 4 climate, I think I'd be tempted to start outdoors with MHP. and ADD wool hen after the chicks get a bit older. One could certainly be innovative in choosing the structure for the wool hen. I might consider: A cardboard box within a cardboard box (or some other structure within the box, with styrofoam or some other insulating layer (even newspaper would work. An old cooler turned upside down with lid removed: cut a cave opening on each of the 2 long sides, and cover the exposed foam with duct tape. (again, I'm thinking about my cold weather. More southern folks could ditch the insulation.
 

MargaretYakoda

Songster
7 Years
Jan 28, 2013
609
172
201
Irondale, Wa
Today is overcast with a few very scattered rain drops. Temps in the low 70s or high 60s.

They don't seem too bothered. I would like to add in a huddle box in one corner, however. I'll probably do that this afternoon.

0.jpg
 

MargaretYakoda

Songster
7 Years
Jan 28, 2013
609
172
201
Irondale, Wa
This is a great addition to the brooding tool box. It doesn't have to be an either/or approach when considering the MHP or the WH. The wool hen could be adapted to be a follow up for the MHP. In my zone 4 climate, I think I'd be tempted to start outdoors with MHP. and ADD wool hen after the chicks get a bit older. One could certainly be innovative in choosing the structure for the wool hen. I might consider: A cardboard box within a cardboard box (or some other structure within the box, with styrofoam or some other insulating layer (even newspaper would work. An old cooler turned upside down with lid removed: cut a cave opening on each of the 2 long sides, and cover the exposed foam with duct tape. (again, I'm thinking about my cold weather. More southern folks could ditch the insulation.
Old styrofoam coolers work great. The one that I had that was borrowed and never returned was a styrofoam cooler.

And yeah.... I'm thinking the whole heat lamp thing is a waste of time and money unless you live in Fairbanks. This method is certainly easier than fussing with the lamp and having chicks raise havoc in your laundry room or garage for two or three months.
 

MargaretYakoda

Songster
7 Years
Jan 28, 2013
609
172
201
Irondale, Wa
Your 5 day old video at abut the two minute mark.....CRACKED me up!
Thanks for sharing
LOL thanks.
And I've done a math mistake. They are FOUR days old today, not five.. I'll be correcting that on the videos. Most of them hatched on the morning and early afternoon of Wednesday the 3rd. Only two hatched half a day early, late evening of Aug 2nd.
Point being, they've only had supplemental heat on that first day (the 3rd) and have been off all heat since then.
 

micah wotring

Crowing
Apr 6, 2015
1,394
3,857
332
WV boy here!
Yeeesssssssss!! I've had this idea and have been trying to design something like this forever! I am really glad to see somebody finally made one and it works! I was thinking of like dusters with some kind of warmer in the core, but this is great. Glad I found this!

Maybe a really low watt heat lamp with wool strips hanging from the lamp but not touching the bulb. And thing the whole thing hanging from above their brooder. Then you would basically have a fluffy hen that would brood chicks any time you wanted! Of coarse it wouldn't show them how to eat and all but it would still be WAY better than a heat lamp.

Oh, this is awesome! Thanks for doing this @MargaretYakoda ! :)

MW
 

SunHwaKwon

Crowing
6 Years
Jul 19, 2015
5,610
2,690
427
North Central Florida
Yeeesssssssss!! I've had this idea and have been trying to design something like this forever! I am really glad to see somebody finally made one and it works! I was thinking of like dusters with some kind of warmer in the core, but this is great. Glad I found this!

Maybe a really low watt heat lamp with wool strips hanging from the lamp but not touching the bulb. And thing the whole thing hanging from above their brooder. Then you would basically have a fluffy hen that would brood chicks any time you wanted! Of coarse it wouldn't show them how to eat and all but it would still be WAY better than a heat lamp.

Oh, this is awesome! Thanks for doing this @MargaretYakoda
 ! :)

MW


I wouldn't use a heat lamp in conjunction with this. That's a very high for hazard even without the fabric touching the bulb. If I needed to add heat I would use a heating pad, regardless of whether I was using a wool hen or not.
 

MargaretYakoda

Songster
7 Years
Jan 28, 2013
609
172
201
Irondale, Wa
I wouldn't use a heat lamp in conjunction with this. That's a very high for hazard even without the fabric touching the bulb. If I needed to add heat I would use a heating pad, regardless of whether I was using a wool hen or not.
@micah wotring Ditto. Please don't ever add a bulb to a wool hen. Fire is NOT a fun thing. And it doesn't help the chicks stay warm. ;)

See my video from last night. It's 98 degrees in there. They don't need any more heat than that.
 

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