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Brooding Your Chicks

Brooding Your Chicks

Brooding Your Chicks

A brooder is a small pen designed to protect, warm, feed and water your newly born chicks until they are strong enough to survive on their own. Basically, a brooder takes the place of a broody hen who under normal circumstances would be responsible for taking care of her clutch.

There are three primary types of brooders:

Regardless of how you brood your chicks, there are some general guidelines to follow:

  • Always ensure chicks have access to clean, fresh water
  • Always ensure litter or liners are dry
  • Follow the instructions if you have purchased a brooder
  • In general, begin your brooder at 90-95° F for week 1 and reduce by 5° each week
  • Watch chicks to ensure they are not too hot (panting)
  • Watch chicks to ensure they are not too cold (huddling together)
  • Always work to eliminate drafts
  • Keep your brooder in a protected area where dust from chickens won’t be a problem (e.g., garage)
  • After the second week, you can begin introducing your chicks to the outdoors
  • Keep your chicks away from pets (especially cats!) and unsupervised children
  • Move you chicks out of their brooder and into their coop after 4 to 6 weeks

Here are a few items you may want to consider purchasing if you plan to brood chicks into chickens:

Brooders All brooders must designed to keep your chicks nice and warm.
  infra red light This infra-red reflector is designed to keep small to medium sized flocks warm.
Price: $29.95
  area brooder This electric area brooder is designed to keep large flocks warm.
Price: $149.95
  box brooder This all-in-one box brooder is what the pros use.
Price: $249.95
Chicken Feeders For most brooders, you will need to add a chick feeder and waterer.
  chick waterer This cute item may be used as either a chick feeder or 64 oz. waterer.
Price: $9.95
  1 gallon chick fountain This one gallon chick fountain is one of our most popular.
Price: $4.95
  18 inch slide top waterer This trough may be used as both a chick feeder and waterer..
Price: $4.95

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