Our brooding set up; recycle bin and microwave cart.
We are getting ready for my four Rhode Island Red chicks that are set to arrive on April 20th. My chicken loving friend, Dawn and I went together and ordered them from the hatchery and she is kind enough to pick them up for us. This hatchery requires a minimum order of 12 so this worked out well for us both.
But before I could set up my brooder, it was time to do a bit of biosecurity level deep clean on the stored chicken materials and supplies for illness prevention. We always give our four girls fresh water and feed everyday and carefully wash our hands after we work with our birds, but we needed to do a more serious disease-control cleaning since it is spring. and these items went through several years of high ground water flooding and possible milder or mold.
The dirty old microwave stand “before” the big clean up.
We took our (soon to be used) plastic chick bucket, our outdoor work boots, waterer and feeders and chick feeding bins to the local car wash for a heavy-duty power washing and then a disinfecting bleach cleaning. It is still freezing here at night so our pumps are not turned on for the summer and our hoses are not out yet.
We also disinfected the old microwave stand and put it out in the sunshine several warm days in a row. It’s certainly nothing fancy but it raises the chicks up and away from our Lab Sassy, and puts them near the window so they have daylight and dark. I also love that there are two shelves for holding feed, extra red light bulbs etc.
New wheels and bottom brightens up the project.
I feel very responsible for my chickens health and wellness so I am very careful about chicken illnesses. I also used peroxide to sterilize as well.
Here our brooder set up as of today…I have organic grower feed, water and Nutradrench vitamins available for day one arrival. I have a red light bulb (and a back-up) to keep the heat at 95 degrees for the newly arrived chicks.
Our brooder is set up in our laundry/mechanical room right off of my kitchen. This room is kept at a 70 degree naturally warm temperature due to the boiler, dryer and washer and we can easily heat it up to 95 with the red light bulb. I have a second lamp and bulb should that be necessary too. Water is nearby and the floor is linoleum so everything is practical as well as convenient!
If poultry biosecurity is a new topic for you, the USDA also has some very informative preventative YouTube programs as well. Here is their link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HLF
Small House Homesteader and chicken keeper, Donna