Baby chicks are coming and I wanted to show you How to DIY Brooder. I will pick them up at noon today at Mt. Healthy Hatchery. I had to build them a brooder to keep them contained in until they are big enough to stay in the coop outside.
I found this DIY brooder on-line at Fresh Eggs Daily blog. Lisa from Fresh Eggs Daily is great source of information on everything chickens.
This How to DIY Brooder took about 30 minutes to complete.
- You take a plastic storage bin, I used 110 Liter size with clip holders for the lid
- For ventilation and heating you need to cut out a hole in the lid leaving 2″ + lip around perimeter.
- I measured dimensions out with a ruler and marked with a sharpie marker, than we drilled holes in corners with a 3/4 ” drill bit (to help turn corners and allow a place to start with saw.
- We placed lid on our trash can to allow it to overhang, but give us enough stability to cut. Follow along your mark with hand saw (Two sets of hand help here!)
- Once lid hole was cut out I used a hand sander that we had to soften edges.
- Cut board to form perimeter for wire to be attached. It doesn’t have to be perfect or any certain size of wood, just enough to hold wire in place. You can see Larry laying wood along plastic top and making a quick mark to saw along.
- Lay the cut out part of lid on top of chicken wire to use as a template, cut 2″ wider than lid so you will have enough wire to secure on board. I used wire snips to cut.
- Lay cut wood dow on flat surface, then wire and top with lid.
- Using small screws and drill, place screws through lid to wood to secure wire.
I also added a small perch for the chicks. I picked up a 1/2″ dowel rod at Mitchell’s cut it to fit in corner. Pre-drilled the rod and hole through plastic bin with 3/16 drill bit and used longer screw to secure.
Because chicks need a non-slippery surface or they can do the splits and get something called ‘spraddle legs‘ I lined the box with newspaper and top with rubber shelf liner. You can easily remove both, replace the newspaper and clean the liner. The reason I am not using shavings is because they are tough to clean and the chicks continually knock them in the waterer. I also need a chick waterer, feeder that allows the chicks to eat without getting into the food, a heat lamp to keep your chicks warm and a small thermometer to confirm temp. in brooder. (I’m picking up a small digital thermometer on the way to the hatchery today.)
Now we are all set up and waiting for the occupants to arrive!