The “big brooder” isn’t the only brooder we have here at Polyface. We also have what we call our “mini brooders”. We have two square brooders that each have a gas overhead heater, windows on either side, and hinges on the roof to make a “door”. This is where Heather brooded the chicks she hatched (and blogged about) last summer. We use these brooders for small batches of birds like hers, or if we run out of space in our big brooder… Both of these brooders are sitting on a re-purposed hay wagon.
Even though they are much smaller than our “Big Brooder”, the same principals apply. These brooders are small spaces designed for small amounts of birds. There’s heat, and two windows for plenty of ventilation. The windows are screened with chicken wire so that chicks can’t get out and nothing else can get it! They get bedded with sawdust and then cleaned out when the chicks are old enough to leave… We can control the temperature and easily feed and water little chicks to keep them comfortable and help them grow.
Buildings and equipment don’t have to be elaborate, expensive, or enormous to be effective… If you don’t need something as big as our big brooder, try something more like one of these! One of my favorite sayings is “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” Find something that works for you!