The brooder area should be preheated at least 6 hours prior to the arrival of the chicks. The aim is to attain the correct floor or litter temperatures.
Sources of heat for brooding
- Charcoal stove
- Kerosene stove
- Gas brooder
- Electrical brooder
- Infrared bulbs
- Hovers or light reflectors
Turn on electrical, gas or charcoal brooders. For charcoal brooders, ensure that the jikos are only introduced into the brooders when fully lit with no smoke, otherwise, introduction of incomplete lit may lead to carbon monoxide poisoning.
Care should be taken when introducing brooder jikos to avoid fire outbreaks by the jiko getting into contact with curtains, litter and clothing. The jikos must be adequately raised so as not to ignite the litter and allow for free movement of chicks under the jikos.
The lids to the jikos must be on to avoid splits of fire dropping onto the litter.
Distribute jikos uniformly within the brooder to avoid cold and hot spots.
Using thermal probes or brooder thermometers placed 5cm from the floor within the brooder area to monitor for correct brooding temperatures.