Summer is finally here, and I’m loving every minute of it! I’m definitely a warm-weather gal…now, if I could just find a place with warm temps and low humidity, that would be heaven!
I have been busy hatching eggs again (I just can’t help myself), and as always, am quite surprised at the results. I have several snow-white babies, both smooth and frizzled, from non-white parents. It is a never-ending surprise, breeding seramas…definitely not for the traditionalist who wants a flock of birds that all look alike!
I have a new brooder now, and I’m testing it out with my current hatches (41 babies, I think)…My past brooder worked really well for me, but it took up a lot of floor space, and the dust in my room was incredible! So, the following is what I came up with…It is constructed from 2 metal shelving units from Costco, and houses one brooder at the bottom of the unit, and another brooder higher up, with 2 additional platforms so the birds have plenty of room to fly and move around as they grow. Each level has a space for newspaper to catch the droppings, eliminating the need for dusty pine shavings or pine pellets, which I like over the shavings. The light is on a dimmer switch, and the whole unit is covered on 3 sides with loose plastic…this allows for air circulation, but keeps the breezes off them from the open door, to prevent drafts. This can easily be removed at any time. Half inch vinyl mesh covers the shelves and floor of each brooder, which is the only item I might change…I’m not sure if the mesh is too small to allow the poop to fall through ‘cleanly’ onto the newspaper…I may replace that with bigger mesh, and just keep the babies in the lower level, on the smaller mesh, for the first 2 weeks or so, and then transfer them to the upper level. I will report back…
The entire unit measures 3′ x 4′
Having the chicks at eye-level makes it so-o-o much easier to check their little butts!
Many thanks to my son, Erik, for figuring out how to add wood to metal! The entire unit is put together with zip ties, so it can easily be rearranged, if need be…That’s why his title is Chief Solutions Officer!