Brian Michael

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since Jan 11, 2018
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bee chicken pig
Southern NH
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Recent posts by Brian Michael

That's pretty much the route I'll be going, unless someone has some wisdom that I have yet to come across.  I don't plan to brood until spring either, just trying to get everything ready now.  Not too much to be done up here this time of year, and in these temperatures, so I try to get as much done in the workshop as possible.  How many chicks are you usually brooding at a time?
1 year ago
Hello All

Looking for some tips on heating an outdoor brooder.

Last year I did all the brooding in the house, and it just got to be too much.  For this year I intend to build a brooder to go out in the old goat shed.  There is no permanent power at that location, and I would like to not add another extension cord to the yard, although I accept that this is the most likely solution.  I had thought about battery power, either solar charged or multiples to swap out when charging, but have determined this is unlikely to be cost effective.  Curious if anyone else broods outdoors, in a barn, or in a shed, and if so what do you do for heat?  

Thanks
Brian
1 year ago
I feel your pain.  You are right, buying eggs would be head ache free, but then again we don't really do this because it's easy.  We do it because we like a challenge, or because we love the animals, or because we value know where our food comes from and how it was raised.  We have just gone through the absolute shortest days of the year - it's only going to get better from here.

Some things to think about:

I find that it is less about the amount of light, and more about the duration.  If you are looking to make an adjustment in that regard, try to get them at least 16 hours of light a day even if it is not super bright.  At the same time you don't want to just keep the lights on all the time - that's likely to stress them out.

With them spending more time in the coop and less time out foraging, have you found any evidence that they have taken to eating eggs?  Sometimes out of boredom, sometimes because they are lacking some particular nutrient, but it happens.

Have you seen any evidence of someone stealing eggs, ie a rat or other critter?

It sounds like you have put quite a bit of effort into your setup, and I hope you manage to stick with it.  Good luck and if you find something that makes a positive change, let us know.  We all have our struggles, especially this time of year.
1 year ago