Title: Agricultural engineering fact sheet
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00082708/00001
 Material Information
Title: Agricultural engineering fact sheet
Uniform Title: Agricultural engineering fact sheet (Gainesville, Fla.)
Abbreviated Title: Agric. eng. fact sheet (Gainesv. Fla.)
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Florida Cooperative Extension Service
Publisher: The Service
Place of Publication: Gainesville Fla
Frequency: irregular
completely irregular
Subject: Agricultural engineering -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
Statement of Responsibility: Florida Cooperative Extension Service.
General Note: Description based on: AE-74; title from caption.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00082708
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 24600783
lccn - sn 92015134
issn - 1060-8737

Full Text

Florida Coo;

L W K A E -3

SUniversity of Fl

Infra-Red Chick Brooder
A. M. PETTIS, Agricultural Engineer
L. W. KALCH, Associate Extension Poultryman

A home-made electric chick brooder using an
infra-red lamp should help considerably in success-
fully caring for 100 baby chicks under Florida
weather conditions. Some electric and flame-type
brooders use a hover but this is not necessary with
an infra-red heat lamp the latest thing in electric
As in other types of brooding, use a substantial
house or shelter to house the brooder, keep down
wind and keep the chicks dry. For successful brood-
ing, provide ample house, feed and water space and
follow good management and sanitary practices.

Materials needed to build an infra-red rooder
for 100 chicks:
weather conditions. Some electric and flame-type
brooders use a hover but this is not necessary with

250 watt (W) pyrex infra-red heat lamp- last ng n t
Porcelain socket
Rubber-sheathed cable (No. 16 wire)
Board for adjusting height
Cardboard barrier or chick guard
Cost.-iYou can construct the brooder for a
very low cost.

Heat Lamp.-lThere are two types of heat
lamps-the pyrex glass and the plain glass types. Use
the 250 W pyrex lamp. It costs more than the other
type, but if water gets on it while it is hot it will not
break. A heat lamp usually lasts longer than an
ordinary light bulb.
ordinary light bulb.

lerative Extension Service

orida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

Wiring.-Use a No. 16 rubber-sheathed cable.
Plug it into an outlet supplied by No. 12 wire. If
you use more than one lamp, be sure the wiring to
the brooder house is large enough to carry the cur-
rent safely.

Socket.-Use a porcelain socket that will stand
the high temperature of the bulb. An ordinary brass
type lamp sockett will not do.

Height Adjustment.-Bore holes at an angle in
a small board as shown on the front page to adjust
the height of the lamp.

Height of Lamp.-Place the heat lamp at the
following heights above the litter: 18" first week,
20" second week, 22" third week and 24" rest of
time needed. During cold, windy periods it may be
necessary to lower the heat lamp until the bottom
is 12 inches above the litter. Do not place the lamp
closer than 12 inches because of fire hazard.

Observe the action of the chicks to be sure the
height is right. Chicks that are too cold will hover
together and those too hot will move away from the

Temperature.-Do not use a thermometer un-
der the heat lamp, as it will not show infra-red heat
accurately. Watch the behavior of the chicks. You
may turn off the lamp in the daytime on warm
days. As soon as the weather and feathering permit
(usually after five weeks) you may discontinue the
the lamp.

Brooder Capacity.-100 chicks with each heat
lamp under Florida conditions.

Cost of Operation.-The heat lamp described
will use 6 kilowatt hours (KWH) of electricity every
24 hours, if burned continuously. After the first few
days the lamp may be off part of the day if the
weather is warm. The cost of operation is slightly
more than the hover-type electric brooder. This is
offset by the low initial cost and other advantages.

Advantages of Infra-Red Brooding.

Low investment cost.
Simple to build and easy to operate.
Litter under brooder is dry.
Chicks are visible at all times.
Saving of labor and space. Brooders are light in
weight and easily moved and stored. They use little
floor space, giving more room for feeders, waterers,
Red light from heat bulb tends to reduce can-

Disadvantages of Infra-Red Brooding:

Operation cost is higher than hover-type elec-
tric brooders.
If electricity fails there is no stored heat.
Bulb could burn out at night and chicks might
become chilled (very unlikely, due to long life of

Regardless of how good the brooder, it will not
entirely replace good housing, sanitation, chicks,
feeding and management.

This circular was promulgated at an annual
cost of $262.75, or 2.63 cents per copy, as
part of a Florida educational program.

House and Equipment.-Before you buy the
chicks, see that the house is well ventilated, cleaned
and disinfected to free it of diseases, parasites, ro-
dents and other vermin. Use good clean litter, such
as planer mill shavings, on the floor. This should be
at least two or three inches deep, and preferably six
or seven inches. To prevent the chicks from eating
the litter when they are first put in the house, cover
it with wrapping paper or newspaper. You can re-
move this after the chicks are about three days old.
Make a chick guard about six feet in diameter
of cardboard or some similar material which will
prevent drafts on the chicks and will keep them
from straying too far from the heat lamp. You can
remove this after about a week. Provide two 24-inch
feed hoppers for the first six weeks and more after
that. Provide two one-gallon fountains or their
equivalent for the first six weeks. During hot
weather add more as needed.

Sanitation.-Be certain the house is clean be-
fore the chicks arrive. If you use only two inches of
litter on the floor, clean the house thoroughly once
a week. If you use six or more inches of litter stir it
well once a week or more often as needed. Observe
the birds carefully and treat for diseases as soon as
they occur.

Chicks.-Buy only high quality pullorum-clean

Feeding.-Sprinkle feed on the paper before
placing the chicks under the lamp so they will begin
eating soon. Keep plenty of a well balanced starting
mash before them at all times. After they are about
six weeks of age, change the feed gradually to a
growing mash.

Management.-Observe the chicks at least four
times a day-early morning, noon, late afternoon
and at night before bedtime. If the chicks are com-
fortable they are usually quiet, if they are not, they
will tell you about it and you should take immedi-
ate action to make them more comfortable. Chicks
respond quickly to excessive cold, heat, hunger or
thirst by poor growth. They also respond nearly as
rapidly to good care and management by fast
growth, high livability and little disease.


Single copies free to residents of Florida. Bulk rates
available upon request. Please submit details on
request to Chairman, Editorial Department, Institute
of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of
Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32611.

(Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914)
Cooperative Extension Service, IFAS, University of Florida
and United States Department of Agriculture, Cooperating
Joe N. Busby, Dean

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