Chicks need heat at start of brooding until they emerge their own feather. Chicks reared through natural brooding get the heat they require from the hen. But in modern poultry production stations, the heat sources for chicks are brooders/Heaters. Kerosene lump, Charcoal heater, Bulb with 60-100 watt as well as Hay box can be used as
- Provide 6 sq inches per chicks under the brooder.
- Brooding should be started at 95 F temperature and be reduced by 5 F every week until 70 F is attained.
- De-beaking may be done at 3rd week of age.
- Provide continuous light during brooding period.
- Provision of clean fresh water.
- Daily inspect the condition of birds for any abnormalities.
- Height of the feeder should be adjusted to the convenience of the chicks.
- Keep a standby in case of emergency electricity failure.
Patterns of chick distribution under electric brooder-
This brooder type can support up to 100 chicks. The advantage of this heater include:
- No risk of power failure, low investment, supplies light and it is portable
- On the other hand, the disadvantage of this brooder include:
- High fuel demand and fuel expensiveness, danger for fire, carbon dioxide production
- Needs a lot of control, heat goes to wrong direction and needs ventilation
The advantage of this heat source include:
- Charcoal is cheaper than kerosene and no risk of power failure
- Require low investment and is portableOn the other hand, the disadvantage include
- There is risk of fire and carbon dioxide production
- Ventilation is necessary and it needs a lot of cont
Bulb with 60-100 watt/electric brooder
The advantage of this heat source include
- It is easy to manage and there is no risk of fire
- It is easy to adjust and supplies light
On the other hand, the disadvantage include
- Electricity is expensive and there is risk for power failure
- Life time not very long and can break easily
Hay box brooder
Hay box brooder can be made from timber, straw and mesh wire. The sizes of the timber differ according to the number of chicks to be reared. In this type of artificial brooder, it is possible to rear 10-70 chicks and it has two parts. These parts are heat maintenance and chick feeder & shelter box as indicated in the following picture
The advantages of Hay box brooder include
- Provides service in rural areas/ no electricity and it is cheap
- Increase the productivity of local chicken breeds and reduces chick mortality
- Helps to rear many chicks at a time and is effective in all agro-ecologies
On the other hand, the disadvantages of this brooder include:
- Sometimes there is the occurrence of pests and
- When there is unavailability of lumber and its expensiveness
Specifications for hay box brooder